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C o p y r i g h t

Publisher Seoul Metropolitan Government Mayor Se Hoon Oh/Myung Bak Lee Vice Mayor Chang Sik Choi/ Seok Hyo Chang Director General of Housing Bureau Hyo Soo Kim/ Young Hur Director of Architecture Division Ki Beom Kwon Commission Supervisors Chang Joo Kwon/ Hyuck Chul Hwang Architecture Division Jung Won Shim/Hyo Seok Park/Jae Young Kim/Jung Sik Lee

Compiler Korea Institute of Architects Advisory Board Young Byun(Presidient), Chang Soo Kim, Hang Sub Park, Sang Leem Lee, Sung Jung Chough Compilation Committee Jae Soon Synn(Editor in Chief), Kyung Rip Park, Chang Mo Ahn, Yong Jae Lee Individual Author Byong Kee Kahng, Kwangsoo Kim, Kyung Rip Park, Young Chea Park, Jae Soon Synn, Chang Mo Ahn, Suk Yeon Yoo, In Suk Yoon, Sang Koo Lee, Yong Jae Lee, Jong Yup Lim, Eun Jung Jun, In Ho Jun, Wook Choi, Kyung Koo Han, Doojin Hwang

English Translator Charlie Lee Chough English Supervisor Sungjung Chough Book Designer Zooneon An Administrative Support Jeongye K. Kang, Soon Young Choi

1st Edited & Printed on 1st, Feb., 2007. 1st Published on 15th, Feb., 2007. Printed in Daehan printech Registration Number 51-6110000-000476-01 Price 15,000won


Seoul Metropolitan Government. All right reserved.

No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed or modified in any form without the prior written permission of the individual author.

SEOUL, Architecture and Urbanism 2007

Nature Enviroment of Seoul and the Value of Land History and Culture in the Architecture of Seoul The City and Architecture of Seoul as the Container of Life The Dynamic Future



P u b l i s h e r ' s

A c k n o w l e d g m e n t

Se hoon Oh Mayor of Seoul

Seoul, as an international city, has a magnificent history of 600 years, a rich cultural legacy and graceful natural features such as the Hangang River and Mt. Namsan. This dynamic city is a blend of traditional and high-tech cultures. At the heart of Seoul, the palace and the castle, reminders of Seoul’s status as the capital city of Korea for the past 600 years, have been preserved. In addition, skyscrapers symbolize Korea’s rapid economic development, and the revitalization of the Cheonggyecheon stream as a resting place for the citizens and historical monuments, highlight the unique architecture of Seoul. The city’s architecture reflects the birth and the development of Seoul, as well as the sincerity of Seoul citizens' life and the culture of the times. Therefore, in conjunction with the Korean Institute of Architects, we are publishing “Seoul, Architecture and Urbanism 2007”, which examines the various aspects and history of Seoul by addressing the architecture of Seoul chronologically and by subject. We hope that this publication will offer others a way to better understand the cultural and anthropological meaning of Seoul, and to experience the history and flavor of Seoul through pictures and text. Urban architecture is a resource for tourism, as well as a landmark that brings together the spirit of a city and increases its brand value. We hope that this book will be the foundation for an increased awareness of Seoul as a leading international city. Finally, we appreciate the effort of the Korean Institute of Architects and the authors in publishing this book.


E d i t o r ' s

A c k n o w l e d g e m e n t

Young Byun President, Korean Institute of Architects

Seoul is a city with a long history. The profound harmony of the mountains and rivers created a robust vessel for life. As hundreds, then thousands, and finally millions of people began to gather in this vessel, it has become the high ground, which today supports the lives of more than 10 million people. From the pit dwellings of the prehistoric age, when early man began the transition to agriculture, to the high-rise apartments and skyscrapers that symbolize Seoul’s progressive technology, engineering and limitless possibilities, Seoul is a city on the rise. Seoul’s rich cultural and historical legacy demonstrates the incredible array of typological characteristics that prevent Seoul from being categorized as one particular kind of city. Seoul is a city that supports all activities, including politics, manufacturing, consumption, work, recreation, residence and education. The spaces for these activities are so evenly distributed from the north to the south, east to west, and from low to high - that the layers of space and time are surprisingly thick and varied.

“Seoul, Architecture and Urbanism, 2007” is the follow-up work to “Seoul, Architecture and Urbanism” published in 2000. As in the 2000 edition, the Seoul metropolitan government left the writing of the book to the Korean Institute of Architects. This book is the result of the combined efforts of the entire KIA, especially the Architectural History Subcommittee and the Publication Committee. “Seoul, Architecture and Urbanism 2007” contains observations and writings about the various meanings implied in the space and time layers of Seoul. The architects’ perspective of research on new buildings and streets has been added to the existing edition. That is to say, the direction of the book is to describe the city and its architecture from the architects' perspective. “Seoul, Architecture and Urbanism, 2007” establishes four viewpoints for looking at Seoul. Every viewpoint has three to six subjects, including aspects of the past, the present and the future. The pictures and text are based on the architects’ perspective, and examine the beautiful and positive aspects of Seoul as well as the negative aspects. By re-examining how the architectural values of Seoul were diluted during the process of development and construction, we are reminded that both the intangible and tangible assets of Seoul should be the foundation of future development. Seoul’s constant and rapid evolution makes it difficult to translate its energy and spirit on paper. Though mere words cannot do it justice, you will see that Seoul is a monumental city, anthropologically and historically. I hope this book gives you a feel for the possibilities of Seoul’s future based on its long and rich history.


004 005 012

016 022 040 058

074 086 106 130 148

178 186 204 220 238 258 272

296 302 318 334 352 366 380 410



Publisher's Acknowledgment


Editor's Acknowledgement


Seoul, the City of Constant Transformation and Change


Nature Enviroment of Seoul and the Value of Land

022 040 058

Mountains Sang Koo Lee Hangang(River), Island Eun Jung Jun Streams and Forests Young Chea Park


History and Culture in the Architecture of Seoul

086 106 130 148

Gates and Boundaries of Seoul Changmo Ahn Old Roads Sang Koo Lee Another Roads, Railroads Changmo Ahn History Culture Enviroment: Palace, Walls and Bukchon


The City and Architecture of Seoul as the Container of Life

186 204 220 238 258 272

Space of Birth and Death, and Religious Facilities Growth and Education Kwangsoo Kim Dwelling Wook Choi Work Suk Yeon Yoo New Consumption Spaces Young Chea Park Rest areas and Cultural Spaces in the Civic Center


The Dynamic Future

302 318 334 352 366

Global Space In Ho Jun The Disappearing and Emerging Landscape Jae Soon Synn The Different Faces of Seoul, an Industrial City In Suk Yoon Higher, Stronger, Deeper Yong Jae Lee Multinational culture Jong Yup Lim




Author’s Biography

Se Hoon Oh

Young Byun

Byong Kee Kahng

Kyung Rip Park

Changmo Ahn

Doojin Hwang

Kyung Rip Park

Kyung Koo Han / Kyung Rip Park

Kyung Rip Park

Yong Jae Lee

SEOUL, Architecture and Urbanism 2007



S e o u l ,

t h e

C i t y

o f

C o n s t a n t

T r a n s f o r m a t i o n

a n d

C h a n g e

Byong Kee Kahng

Faster and More

Does Seoul, the City with a Population of 10 Million, Exist or Not?

According to the 2005 census, the population of Seoul is 10.3 million. In 1956, right after the Korean War, it was only 1.5 million - the population multiplied by a factor of seven in the span 50 years. The population increased by 3.5 million in the 60’s, and by another 3 million in the 70’s. Though the population decreased by 2 million and 1 million in the 80’s and 90’s respectively, this was merely a result of population shifts to nearby suburban areas such as Gyeonggi-do. The population has leveled off at 10.3 million since the year 2000, but that stability may be short-lived.

When I looked down on the city of Seoul at night from an airplane on my return trip home, I felt like the airplane had been sucked into a sea of lights. Like a sea of candles cradled in paper cups, the lights flickered in an orderly, linear form. While some were bunched together like bees in a hive, others flickered in the dark of night all alone. The thousands of homes were filled with millions of people dreaming of a better tomorrow and the happiness of their families.

Imagine the situation during the period of the 60’s to the 80’s when almost 300,000 people poured into the city each year - a figure which is equivalent to the entire planned population of Bundang, one of the satellite cities of Seoul. That is to say, 822 people, or 205 households (based on the average number of four people per household), moved into Seoul everyday. In order to keep up with the rising population, a large apartment building of more than 200 units would have had to be built everyday. In addition to housing, one elementary school would have had to be built every 10 days. Indeed, it was an unimaginable situation unmatched anywhere else in the history of the world. As a result, people endured indescribable hardships such as living in makeshift shacks in squatters’ villages on the top of the mountains and elsewhere, and attending school in shifts to accommodate overcrowded classrooms. In an effort to relieve the congestion, the government adopted a “quicker for more” policy. Although it is true that there are many criticisms against the military government of the time, the wave of urbanization and the explosive increase in population could not have been handled without the strict discipline of the military government. It was fortunate that we were able to avoid a situation such as the one in Mexico City, Mexico and Mumbai, India. It is interesting to note that some say “hurry, hurry” has become second nature for Koreans. In order to meet the demand for housing, a community housing concept, or apartment housing was introduced and quickly adopted. The prestigious high schools in the Gangbuk, or north of the Hangang area, relocated to the new town of Gangnam, or south of the Hangang River. Modern apartment buildings were built in Gangnam to encourage people to move to the new town to balance the population between the old and new parts of the city. Even the undesirable side effect of real estate speculation helped speed the development of Gangnam new town. Eventually, apartments represented more than half of the new residences constructed in Seoul. This was due in part to the people who sought to maximize the profitability of their investment in real estate. In a way, the ability to change and adapt quickly protected Seoul from chaos and paved the way for the economic development we now enjoy. While focused on the development of Gangnam, Gangbuk was neglected and the quality of life in the Gangbuk area deteriorated. That eventually created a disparity between Gangbuk and Gangnam, leaving the residents of Gangbuk deeply frustrated with the government’s failed social policy.


Seoul is marked on the maps of Korea by a special symbol to indicate that it is the capital city of the Republic of Korea. All world atlases indicate Seoul, if not the other cities of Korea. The ’88 Olympics put Seoul on the world stage, and now most foreigners have at least heard of Seoul. Hanyang, which Lee Taejo, the first king of the Joseon dynasty established as his capital city in a basin surrounded by Naesasan (or the four inner mountains), is now a city of 10 million surrounded by the Oesasan (or the outer four mountains) with the Hangang River flowing through the middle. What’s more, I, myself, actually live in Seoul. Now, consider this. The physical size and the cognitive ability of a human being can be compared to an ant on the back of an elephant. The ant can look out on the world beyond the elephant but not necessarily see the elephant itself. The human (the ant), rather than knowing Seoul (the elephant) by actually seeing it, has only the image of Seoul deduced from the information and knowledge that they’ve collected. The claim of Seoulites that Seoul exists in the world in a certain form, whatever form it may be, is merely a simulacrum of the large elephant. Seoulites are not able to see every nook and corner of Seoul in his/her entire life, nor do they feel it necessary to do so. They merely try to assemble a composite image of Seoul on their own by weaving together the fragments of information they have collected through pictures, maps, other visual media, numbers and statistics. This composite sketch in conjunction with the information acquired through their own experience gives them their “view” of Seoul. They believe that Seoul exists at a certain position on the map or in a certain spatial territory. In other words, the Seoul they claim exists is nothing but a false image which is subjective and conceptual. That Seoul does not exist. However, for Seoulites, Seoul does exist. It is their claim that Seoul “must exist,” not realizing that what they see is actually a false image built in their cognitive mind from the fragments of their experience of the city. This means that “my Seoul” does not exist in reality, but “Seoul” exists through its relationship with me. Seoul as the simulacrum has the stronger existence than the real Seoul. Suppose we take a subway from our home, travel through the underground, get off, and leave the station. Our knowledge of the existence of Seoul is limited only to the visual, auditory, and tactile experience we acquired within the range of 1 to 2km radius around the subway station.

It is naive to regard a piece of Seoul as the substance of Seoul. Nevertheless, it is also one of the pieces of “my Seoul.” For me, Seoul is a collage of the fragments that I experienced directly and the mosaic of my indirect experience. Therefore, although each citizen of Seoul has a different image of the city, there exists the city of Seoul, a collective physical place where 10 million people live together. There are as many Seouls as the number of people in Seoul. However, the simulacrums of each Seoul citizen are not the same. Thus, Seoulites live and believe that their image of Seoul is the real Seoul. Some of them are nostalgic, past-oriented images while others are future-oriented imaginations and dreams. The lights at night signal the hopeful and future-oriented Seoul. Since the simulacrum is Seoul, Seoulites can load their hopes on it. Conversely, politicians believe that they are capable of manipulating the simulacrum because it is an edited image. Therefore, they have dreamt of the future of Seoul and they will continue do so. Finding the identified figure of new Seoul Koreans were heavily obsessed with the task of dealing with the population boom and rapid urbanization during the 30 year period from the 1960’s through 1980’s. It was fortunate for Koreans that they were able to calm down and change the frame of mind during the democratization process of the 1990’s. Due to the paradigm shift toward a sustainable development that pays more attention to the environment; there have been signs of a big policy change that will shape Seoul in the 21st century. Motivation for power was sought for in the creativity and participation of experts and citizens, instead of the ideas of the politicians and their decisions. The power of the reinstated autonomy system and direct election of the leaders of the local government began to emerge, although slowly. During the mayoral election in 2002, the candidates championed many political platforms ranging from a better environment, clean politics, to a pedestrian-oriented city, and a city that you would want to live in. Though the election took place in the heat of the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea-Japan that year, a great deal of attention was paid to the election because the effort to restore the Cheonggyecheon stream became a hot issue. The candidate who supported the restoration won the election. The newly elected mayor, six months after his inauguration, started the restoration project by dismantling the elevated freeway that was the symbol of the development era. The newly restored Cheonggyecheon stream, a symbol of the new environmental era, presented Seoulites with a wide-open urban landscape and a water-friendly space. Though there are criticisms of the spatial contents and the process, the citizens who eagerly sought environmentally-friendly places welcomed the open stream in the heart of the city. Urban development projects now attempt to be environmentally healthy and humane, while the main focus in the past had been economical. The infrastructure facility is expected to maintain and improve the surrounding area in the future.

The urban policy aimed at rapid economic development inevitably focused on the traffic policy, and naturally, the pedestrian was not the primary concern. New wide roads were opened up, and existing roads were expanded and organized for better circulation of the automobiles. Policies for a pedestrian-friendly city and projects were attempted, but they ended up with meager landscape projects. The traffic square in front of city hall used to be one of the worst traffic congested areas in the city. However, the mayor, with the support of the citizens, transformed the square into the citizens’ public plaza for pedestrians to access. Along with projects such as the restoration of the Cheonggyecheon stream and transformation of Seoul Plaza, the exclusive bus lane was created. This represents the shift of the transportation system from the automobile-centered system of the economic development era, to the pedestriancentered public transportation system. Though it is still not enough, crosswalks in critical areas like the Gwanghwamun intersection have been reinstated. The paved lanes have been reduced in Sejongno, and a square was created in the middle. Sejongno will be renamed Gwanghwamun square, while a substantial portion of the street will be transformed into a square. The city government of Seoul is starting to pay attention to the question of what the country wants, and at the same time, what the citizens want. Two mountains of garbage on Nanjido island were transformed into green parks, and Seoul Forest replaced the old horse race track on Ttukseom island, raising the status and the character of the area. This clearly shows that large-scale buildings or facilitycentered development projects are not the only ways to develop different areas of the city. No other architectural space or structure has contributed to the development of the city or has been as enthusiastically welcomed by Seoulites than Seoul Plaza, Cheonggyecheon stream, Nanjido island or Seoul Forest. Recently, Seonyudo park in the middle of Yanghwa-daegyo bridge presented itself as a special example of an architectural space that was designed to be a non-architectural space. With its extremely minimal design and little artificial intervention, it claims international fame. Seoul, as an international city, is a city that has a brighter future than it did in the past. People of different skin colors gather and world-renowned architects and experts in diverse fields have joined us. There are plenty of opportunities for foreigners, architects and experts in the global city of Seoul. Fair competition is imperative. The result of this competition is going to shape Seoul as a shining mosaic. Changing in this way, Seoul will claim for its own existence the sea of lights flickering under a dark night sky.


Nature Environment of Seoul and the Value of Land



N a t u r e

E n v i r o n m e n t

o f

S e o u l

a n d

t h e

V a l u e

o f

L a n d

Kyung Rip Park

Since the advent of civilization on the Korean peninsula, the Hangang River has played a crucial role in the historical development of Korea. The geographical advantages of the Hangang are proven by the remains of dwelling pits from the Stone Age in Amsa-dong, Mongchon-toseong and Samseongdong-toseong (both mud ramparts) and the Achasanseong Castle of the Baekje and Goguryeo kingdoms period. The ancient history of the Three Kingdoms - Goguryeo, Baekje, Silla - reveals the control of the Hangang as a vital step to dominance on the Korean peninsula. Seoul’s value to the ancient kingdoms is confirmed by the many different names given to Seoul and the surrounding area. In the Goguryeo period, Seoul was called Nam-pyeongyang. Later, in the Goryeo period, the name was changed to Nam-gyeong, both of them meaning “Capital in the South.” The first step to prosperity was taken in 1068 by King Munjong of the Goryeo Dynasty, but it wasn’t until the beginning of the Joseon Dynasty in the 15th century that the decision was made to relocate the capital to Hanyang, the old name for Seoul. Since then, Seoul has held firm to its status as the premier city in Korea, not only politically but socially, culturally and economically. Since the occupation and subsequent liberation from Japan, Seoul has been the dynamic economic engine which has driven Korea’s remarkable economic growth. The population of Seoul has increased ten-fold in the past 50 years and consequently, Seoul has recently experienced unprecedented spatial expansion. The amazing fact that Seoul was able to support such continuous development over a long period of time, eloquently states the value of the site of Seoul. With Bukhan-san Mountain as a background, a citadel wall with eight gates was constructed along the ridgelines of Baegak-san Mountain, Nakta-san Mountain, Eung-bong Peak, Inwang-san Mountain, and Mongmyeok-san Mountain, which naturally defined the boundary of Seoul. The layout of the capital city was said to be based on the Jurye-gogonggi, a Chinese engineering principle. Instead of being constrained to the principles in the book, the actual layout was unique, understood the characteristics of the natural terrain, and utilized them to their advantage. The value of Seoul’s location became even more evident during the process of modern development. The large natural concentric boundary extending from the boundary of old Hanyang made it possible to accommodate development without deformation of the original shape. The auspicious and beautiful mountains surrounding the site protect the city and make a natural boundary. The Hangang River, which is the supply line for the city, the vast flat lands for production, and its location at the center of the Korean peninsula, are just some of the natural advantages of Seoul. The site continues to demonstrate its value as a large container to accommodate the ceaseless development of Seoul while maintaining its historical layers.


Mountains The natural environment of Seoul is the basis for the culture and history of Seoul. The surrounding mountains provide Seoul with its characteristic feature and are its most valuable asset. The surrounding mountains that offer Seoulites places for recreation are the most important elements that determine the characteristics of Seoul’s cityscape, and as the background for Seoul’s buildings, they have a profound impact on the city. They offer a place to view the cityscape and are a valuable resource for tourism. Most Seoulites grew up hiking in these mountains. They embrace and energize the weekend hikers who look for a release from the pressures of the work week. The mountains even offer an opportunity for rock climbing within the city, which many mountaineers of the world envy. The mountains that we see from the windows of our home and work places are beautiful and stand there firmly protecting us. Though they have deteriorated, the old citadel wall that once defined the city can be seen here and there around the city. The wall, currently being restored, not only shows us a layer of the developmental history of the city, but also allows us to smell the fragrance of the vivid history that still breathes in Seoul.

Rivers and Islands

Streams and Forests

Water is the origin of life. Emerging from springs deep within the mountains, the water begins as streams and eventually merges to form rivers before reaching the sea. The control of water has always been a fundamental task for a successful ruler. The old saying, “agriculture is the root of heaven and earth,” illustrates the importance of agriculture as the basic industry of society. The ruler was expected to control water for irrigation and prevent flooding. In a modern city, water is still a valuable commodity as a basic necessity for industry and everyday life.

The restoration of the Cheonggyecheon Stream became the starting point of the restoration of Seoul as a historical city and its natural environment. Covering the Cheonggyecheon was a symbol of the industrialization of the country. It was a very attractive solution to elevate the freeway over the covered Cheonggyecheon to create a speedy connection between the east and west of the city. However, it was not long before it became clear that the eco-system of the covered stream was severely damaged and its vitality lost. After a lengthy period of trial and error, the elevated freeway and the concrete cover were dismantled and breathing room was restored. The Cheonggyecheon was reborn. Water flows in the once congested area and a place for walking and relaxation was reborn. However, the walls on both sides of the Cheonggyecheon are monotonous and tend to make pedestrians walk faster. It would be better if it had a connection to the surrounding streets and buildings. The fact that many people flock to the area in spite of these shortcomings is proof that Seoul lacks natural resting areas.

The Hangang witnessed all the history that took place within its length and was the source of water and power. It was also the source of sentiment: it comforted the agonized, offered rest, and became the center of cultural exchange. According to Lee Jung-hwan’s famous “Taengniji,” the most prominent work on geography of the 18th Century, the Hangang is “the largest river in the nation. The origin is far and distant and it is much affected by the tides. There are waterways in Hwanggang in Cheongpung to the Southeast, Geumcheonn and Mokgye (Crossing) in Chungju, Hongwonchang Warehouse in Wonju and Baegaechon Village in Yeoju. To the northeast, Uduchon Village in Chuncheon, Wonamchon Village in Nangcheon, and Jeongpado Island in Yeoncheon Stream can be accessed by waterways for credit transactions. However, only Hanyang - Seoul’s old name - is accessible from the sea and river on the right and the left and has the advantage of the trading ships gathering from the rivers on the right and the left. This is why Hanyang is the best place for financial prosperity.” With the development of the Gangnam, or the area south of the river, the Hangang River that used to flow to the south of Seoul became the river flowing through the middle of the city. The high-rise apartment complexes along the river and the various facilities developed on the river banks have changed the appearance of the Hangang extensively. There are many islands in the Hangang including Yeouido, Jungjido, Bamseom, Nanjido and Ttukseom. Each of these islands has its own unique history of happiness and sorrow. They have seen dramatic changes from half a century ago: ferry points have been replaced by the many bridges that now connect to the riverbanks. Some of the islands such as Yeouido island are now busy business districts and others such as Seonyudo have become public parks.

In addition to Cheonggyechoen Stream, many other streams within the city such as Junghakcheon, Hongjecheon and Yangjaecheon, support the daily life of the neighborhood. Also, many other streams, once covered with asphalt, are being restored to their old form. There have also been significant changes made on both sides of the Jungryangcheon where bicycle paths were installed along the stream and wetlands. Although access was limited due to the Dongbu Expressway, it is evident that the open space at Jungryangcheon Stream provides breathing room between the densely populated high-rise apartment compounds in the area. As such, it is encouraging to know that people have become aware of the precious value of the water-land interface area and natural preservation. Another sign of the restoration of Seoul can be observed in the effort to expand various green open spaces such as Seoul Forest and Hanul Park. In addition to these open spaces, the five major royal palaces and the remaining royal tombs of Seoul are valuable assets, not just for their historical value, but also for their role as the “forest in the city” and the reduction of urban density.

In spite of these changes, the Hangang River continues to flow as it has for thousands of years - rapidly in some places and in others, at a leisurely pace. Sometimes, the river follows the settlements and other times, it flows in isolation. This is why the Hangang River is one of the important features that characterize Seoul.


Mountains Sang Koo Lee


Mountains embrace the city of Seoul. The capital of the Joseon Dynasty was surrounded by Mt. Baegaksan, Mt. Inwangsan, Mt. Namsan and Mt. Naksan. Contemporary Seoul, having outgrown these mountains, is now surrounded by the mountain ridges of Mt. Samgaksan, Mt. Deokyangsan, Mt. Gwanaksan and Mt. Yongmasan. Seoul is situated in a basin surrounded by dual rings of mountains: the inner mountains of old Hanyang including Baegaksan (342m), Inwangsan (338m), Namsan (265m), and Naksan (125m); and the outer mountains including Samgaksan (836m), Deokyangsan (125m), Gwanaksan (829m) and Yongmasan (348m). The mountains are visible from anywhere in Seoul. The white heads of Baegaksan and Inwangsan can be seen over the tiled roofs of Gyeongbok Palace and Sejongno, which was the Yukjogeor (the street of administrative buildings) of Hanyang. The green pine trees of Namsan appear between the building forests of Euljiro and Toegyero. If you look up from anywhere in Seoul, you see the mountains that stand watch over the alleys filled with the sights and sounds of life. You can sense the mountains even with your eyes closed. The ups and downs of the many hilly streets allow the body to feel the presence of the mountains. Even though Seoul was founded in the basin of the inner mountains, the development of Seoul in the modern age has transformed those mountains into a part of the city. Houses have intruded into the mountains and the valleys have been filled with buildings. Even the top of the mountains were invaded and became a “moon village� of squatters. Apartment buildings stand like wind screens on the inner mountains that surround the old part of the city. The mountains of Seoul, with its hilly roads and stairs, have become just another part of the harsh, daily life of the citizens of Seoul. City features, which are so close to the mountains, are not limited to Seoul in the urban history of Korea. The Gaegyeong citadel wall of Gorye Dynasty was built along the ridges of Songaksan Mountain, Jinesan Mountain, Yongsusan Mountain, Deokambong Peak and Buheungsan Mountain. During the Three Kingdoms period, city features also mirrored the mountains. The reason that mountains are so familiar to us is because it is such an important part of our history and culture. Just as children resemble their parents, Seoul resembles the historical cities that preceded it. That important gene is the relationship between city and mountain. Seoul is closely related to the Pogok-type castle, a type of Korean castle built on mountains. The first example of a Pogok Castle was the Jolbonseong Castle of the Gogurye Kingdom. It began with an independent castle on a mountain. In order to overcome the disadvantage of limited land space, it was paired with a castle on flat land closer to the houses and fields. Later, as shown in the Janganseong Castle of Gogurye Kingdom, the paired castles merged to become the Korean style of castle. This pattern was continued until Hanyang, the capital of Joseon. The pattern of building cities near mountains continued for years. Seoul, which is surrounded by inner and outer mountains, still has features reminiscent of its predecessors. This pattern contains features that can be traced back to the first Jolbonseong Castle of Goguryo, bridging a gap of over 2000 years.




Seoul is a city of mountains. Namsan Mountain (named Mongmyeoksan during the Joseon Dynasty), which now stands in the center of Seoul, was originally to the south of the city and one of the four inner mountains of Hanyang. A citadel wall was built along this inner mountain ridge during the Joseon Dynasty and this wall became the boundary dividing the city into areas “inside the castle” and “outside of the castle.” Seoul, which had a population of 200,000 during the Joseon Dynasty, has grown to a city of over 10 million residents. Namsan is no longer a boundary of the city but a green space in the middle of the city. B2d-3




The mountain ridge of the inner mountains, where the citadel wall was built in the Joseon period still surrounds the downtown area of Seoul. The wall became a cultural asset showing the history of Seoul and its original purpose as a military facility to protect the city. However, the inner mountains such as Bugaksan, Inwangsan, Namsan and Naksan still stand, identifying this place as the capital city of Joseon. The capital city of Joseon has also continued to play an important role in Korean history since the period of the Three Kingdoms. For that reason, the appearance of Seoul, surrounded by mountains themselves, is the most precious historical landscape of Seoul. B2d-3




One of the mountains to the north side is Baegaksan. It was the main mountain of Hanyang and the Gyeongbok Palace, which was the seat of the Joseon Dynasty. The premier street in Korea, lined with central offices, was created in front of Gwanghwamun, the front gate of Gyeongbok Palace. The name, Yukjogeori Street, was changed to Gwanghwamuntong, and then changed again to Sejongno. But it remains the representative main street of Korea. Thus, the landscape from Sejongno to Gwanghwamun Gate, Gyeongbok Palace, and Baegaksan was influenced by Baegaksan’s status as the main mountain of Hanyang. B2b-27




Inwangsan Mountain is on the west side of the city and stands close to the civic center of Seoul. The heights of Jongro, Gwanghwamun Negeori and Gwanghwamun is 25m, 30m and 35m above sea level, respectively. However, the top of Inwangsan, which is only 1.8km away, jumps to 338m above sea level. Gyeomjae Jeong-seon, who lived in what is now Ogin-dong in the Inwangsan Valley, painted a beautiful and powerful picture of Inwangsan entitled Inwang-jesaek. He built his house in the Inwangsan Valley and named it, Ingog-yugeo which means “an isolated house.� The Janganyeonu painting depicts the view over Hanyang city from the west side of Inwangsan to Baegaksan on a rainy spring day in the middle of the 18th century. Namsan Mountain stands on the other side with the peaks of Gwanaksan Mountain, Umyeonsan Mountain and Cheonggyesan Mountain in this vivid painting. In spite of the high-rise buildings at the base Namsan and Inwangsan, we can still enjoy the same beautiful mountain landscape of Seoul that Gyeomjae painted. B1-3




Mt. Naksan, which translates to “camel back” is on the east of the city. It was so named because it resembles a camel’s back, and is a very familiar mountain to Seoulites, despite the fact that it only stands 125m tall. After the Korean War, squatters built makeshift shacks on this mountain and later, in the 1950s, “rehabilitation houses” were also added. In 1968, the citizens’ apartments were built on the high crest of Naksan. Now, the mountain has become part of city and its reality. B1-11


The long alleys of steep slopes and steps, which were generated when squatters settled down on the mountain, are still being used on a daily basis by the people. Fortunately, the moon villages of the hillside slums are disappearing into history one by one, leaving trailing notes of the past. The last apartment on top of Mt. Naksan was torn down in Aug, 2000, and a new, large, bright park with breathtaking vistas of the city was built to replace the old and dark buildings. The black rubber shoes of people who used to climb up and down the steep stepped alleys have been replaced with the white tennis shoes of people walking in the park.


The population of Seoul exploded during the rapid industrialization of the 60’s and 70’s. Seoul expanded into the surrounding area, and the mountains and hills also became the part of the city. People gathered to the hillside and mountainside slums for cheaper housing, while unlicensed shacks covered the mountains. Wolgok, the last remaining hillside slum, or moon village, in Seoul has almost disappeared. The houses, clustered like shells, were emptied. Soon the area would be filled with construction cranes. And eventually, the forest would give way to apartments taller than the mountain itself.




The mountain ridge in Hannam-dong, which once was a public cemetery, is densely clustered with many houses for the living. The mountain and hills, which were once reserved for the dead, have incorporated into the busy city. After the dead were exhumed, the aptly named “Goblin Market� was built on the mountain, along with a church and an Islamic mosque. Next came high-rise apartments, not unlike mountains themselves along the Hangang River. B2d-8




Everywhere you look you can see mountains in the city of Seoul. This mountain-filled landscape reflects Seoul’s adherence to the Korean city tradition first established in the Three Kingdoms Period. Korean cities have always been close to mountains, and the mountains have shaped the historical landscape of every Korean city. Mountains are the link that connects Seoul to its history and tradition. C1-7


Rivers and Islands Eun Jeong Jeon


The Hangang, located in the south of Seoul, had many islands even as recently as half a century ago. Ferryboats connected the north and south banks of the river. The Hangang has wide beaches and many people came during the summer to enjoy the water. Over time, ferries were replaced with bridges and many of the islands disappeared or were integrated into the riverbanks through various development projects. The river once marked the southern border of Seoul, but due to the development of the Gangnam at the south of the river, the Hangang now flows through the center of Seoul. The apartments that were built along the river, the roads, and developments by the water edge changed the features of the Hangang. In spite of the many changes, the Hangang has been a constant and influential feature of Seoul.

The Hangang flowed across large expanses of beach just 50 years ago. There were more than 16.5 million square meters of beaches in the stretch from Dongbuichondong to Bamseom islet, and on the Jeojado in front of Ttukseom, the Buriseom, and Nanjido. Unfortunately, much of it has disappeared due to the Hangang development which began in 1968. Before the Seoul Olympics, the river was dredged and reservoirs were constructed to maintain the average depth of the river to 2.5m so excursion ships could travel the river. The beach at Bamseom was larger than Yeouido, but it was destroyed for aggregate for the Hangang development and Yeouido dam construction. However, Bamseom immediately began gathering sediment and in the 70’s through 1985, increased in size to 185,000 square meters; by 2005, it had grown to over 240,000 square meters. Bamseom’s recovery is surprisingly quick with an average expansion of 4,200 square meters and an increase in height of 6cm annually. During the flood season, the island is submerged, and the resulting autogenous ecosystem is made up of only the most robust plant species. The common reeds and willows native to the islet draw many common herons, gulls and cormorants. In the distance, Seogangdaegyo Bridge stands above Bamseom, higlighting the balance between conservation and development. Presently, Bamseom is designated as an ecologically protected area, and is the only island in the Hangang that is recovering without intervention. Seonyudo was an island that was lost in our memory for a time during the modernization age. Since very few people were aware that this was one of eight scenes painted by Gyeomjae Jeongseon, this island was not treated with the reverence it deserved. Seonyubong in Seonyudo, which means the “peak where nymphs from heaven play” lost much of its beauty during the Hangang development, and was used as a water purification plant since 1978. Purification operations were discontinued in 2000 after the opening of the Gangbuk Purification Plant. Following the closure, there were many discussions regarding the plans for this land. Through an open design competition in 2002, it was reborn as Seonyudo Park, where a part of the old plant converted into the “memory of the place.” The island lost its shape forever. However, with its beautiful scenery of Mt. Bukhansan and Mangwonjeong Pavillion, and a view of Mt. Namsan, we are reminded to appreciate the beauty of the island. Now that the park (which honors the site that was immortalized in poems and songs) has returned back to the citizens, it has a special meaning in the urban history of Seoul. In this regard, Seonyudo Park represents “the beginning of the recovery of the 'sense of placeness' for Hangang.” People access Seonyudo Park through the bridge facing Gangbyeon Road and the Hangang. This easy access resolves the disconnection between the city and the Hangang, allowing people to enjoy the park anytime and during any season.



Night scenery viewed from Eungbong-dong. C2-8





The Bamseom was larger than Yeouido, but it was destroyed for aggregate for the Hangang development and Yeouido dam construction. However, Bamseom immediately began gathering sediment with an increase of 4,200 square meters and an increase in height of 6cm annually, demonstrating a surprisingly powerful autogenic ability. Presently, Bamseom is designated as an ecologically protected area and is the only island in the Hangang that is recovering without intervention. A2-19




View of the Seonyugyo Bridge from the Hangang River Citizen’s Park: The Bridge, designed by a French architect, was built by the joint efforts of Korea and France to commemorate the new millennium. The Seonyudo Park, with an introduction of the water purification facility utilizing plants, offers an environmental play- study field for children. A2-8




The artificial island of Nodeulseom was once no more than a sand hill, but its size increased 500% to 150,000 square meters through reclamation work. The amusement park where people enjoyed water sports on the beach near the Nodeulseom has disappeared, but the area has been designated as a possible location for a performing arts center, prompting an international design contest. This is just one of the projects designed to transform the Hangang, which was damaged through over-development, into a cultural center. B3-3 Some islands disappeared due to the Hangang development. Some of these lost islands were replaced by artificial islands. Seoraeseom near Banpodaegyo Bridge, although an artificial island, was assimilated with the river’s ecosystem by the power of nature. The result is a natural, rich island. B3-6 The constant accumulation of sediment to the south of Donghodaegyo Bridge is the only remaining evidence of the island of Jeojado that once occupied the area.





There are a total of 20 bridges across the Hangang, including Gayangdaegyo Bridge which opened in 2002. The oldest bridge, the Hangangcheolgyo Railroad Bridge is 100 years old, and was designed and constructed by westerners in 1900. Just next to it, Hangangdaegyo Bridge was built in 1917 and the Gwangjindaegyo bridge in 1936. Thirty years later in 1965, the Yanghwadaegyo Bridge was built. Since then, the development of Gangnam has spurred the construction of many bridges connecting the north and south. These bridges over the Hangang, which represent a century of Korean history, are the result of the vehicle-centric construction philosophy that governed Seoul during much of the 20th century. Among the 20 bridges that span the Hangang, only the Seonyugyo Bridge, which provides access to Seonyudo Park, was built with walking as the first priority. There are no facilities that people can access from the Hangang because of the Olympic Road and Gangbyeon Expressway. The lack of buildings that are built with a relationship to the river demonstrates the lack of care Seoul shows for the Hangang. The marina at the edge of the Hangang has not seen the benefits of development in construction design or technology. Many feel that the vehicle-only bridges should be converted into pedestrian passages that enhance the value of the Hangang, or transform the Hangang into a canal. However, the first question that must be addressed is whether or not there are any cultural facilities near the Hangang which would make a pedestrian passage bridge worthwhile. The potential of the Hangang is unlimited: the construction of dams or riverbanks to control floods, bridges for logistics or to prepare for a war, or riverside expressways built purely for fast traffic. The status of the Hangang will depend on how the Hangang is changed. B3-4

B3-1, C2-9

Compared to other bridges over the Hangang with their romantic stories, some bridges remind us of important and at times painful events in history. The Hangang-cheolgyo Bridge was destroyed during the Korean War, and recovered completely in 1969. The Hangangdaegyo is a twin bridge that combines construction techniques from the 1930’s and 1980’s. A ride on the Hangang excursion ship quickly reveals the different construction methods of different eras. Just as old historical buildings tell stories of the past, the bridges of the Hangang reveal the history of Seoul. The Seongsudaegyo Bridge is a reminder of a painful moment in the life of the Hangang. In 1994, the top board of the Seongsudaegyo broke, resulting in the deaths of many people, and shocking the citizens of Seoul. This accident highlighted the importance of proper maintenance. Since that tragic day, the Seongsudaegyo Bridge has been reconstructed as a first-rate bridge with increased quality. B3-1, C2-9



C2-16, B2c-3, B3-7, C2-15

The basic principles of a bridge design are function and safety. However, as economics and aesthetics also become important factors, the appearance of the Hangang bridges is a popular topic in Seoul. For these reasons, bridge designs with longer spans between supports are becoming more popular for their lower construction costs and aesthetic value. Designed with appearance as a key priority, the Wonhyo-daegyo Bridge utilizes a PSC box-type bridge design with 100m span between supports, resulting in a beautiful appearance and structural stability. The Dongjak-daegyo Bridge has a maximum span of 80m, which gives it a fresh and feminine softness that is well integrated into the surrounding environment. Cheongdam-daegyo, which was completed before the new millennium, is the first double-deck bridge connecting Jayang-dong, Gwangjin-gu and Gangnam-gu. The subway line #7 operates through the lower deck. The current trend of placing emphasis on the appearance of a bridge inspired the use of landscape lighting on bridges over the Hangang. The Cheongdam-daegyo bridge has two levels and is decorated with dim green lights, offering an outstanding night view. Each bridge was designed with different colored lights so people can recognize and appreciate the bridges. The city lights of Seoul are lit all night, and this characteristic carries over to the bridges of Seoul. The Hangang is no longer merely the background or border of the city; it is quickly becoming the center of the city;s landscape. The Hangang needs another bridge to further enhance its beauty and activate the cultural space of the Hangang area. C2-16, B2c-3, B3-7, C2-15



During the Joseon Dynasty, there were many ferryboats on the Hangang to convey people and goods. It was the sole source of transportation across the river. However, with the construction of many bridges since the 1970s, ferryboats began to disappear from the river and have now become just a part of the Hangang’s history. After the development of the Hangang, the depth of water was maintained even to allow the passage of excursion ships on the the Hangang. The most popular piers for excursion ships are in Yeouido and Jamsil with their cafes and restaurants, as they allow people to enjoy a romantic atmosphere away from the crowded city. Despite their popularity, the western style names and ships tend to decrease the cultural value of the Hangang. In the old days, ferries served not only to create centers of transportation, but also to spread the local folk culture. Similarly, the true potential of ferries and excursion ships is to demonstrate the value of the Hangang beyond recreation and tourism. A ride on a Hangang excursion ship reveals over a century of Seoul’s history. The balance of contemporary and modern architecture in the city becomes evident as you pass under the Hangang-cheolgyo Railroad Bridge and the Hangang-daegyo bridges. B3-3




A2-9, A2-10

The Hangang is becoming a bigger part of the lives of all Seoulites. In recent years, the Hangang has established itself not only as an event space but an “everyday� space where people can walk or ride bicycles, dramatically increasing the number of visits. Of course, many events such as marathons serve the important function of gathering people together. However, the real owners of the Hangang are not the people who come to attend the events, but the local residents who use the Hangang as a daily part of their lives. As many access roads to the Hangang civil park were built to enjoy diverse activities, people don’t have to go far to entertain themselves. The Hangang civil parks have been reincarnated as the cradle for well-being and leisure, offering the public a safe place to ride bikes, in-line skate, study nature, camp, fish, and enjoy a wide variety of athletic endeavors. The interconnecting bicycle roads along the Hangang have encouraged many people to ride bicycles to work, which is an important shift in the transportation paradigm. Even though the Hangang has become a terraced river, the intended uses are the same as those of the past. The Hangang beckons to the people of Seoul to unleash its unlimited potential. A2-9, A2-10


Streams and Forests Young Chea Park


Seoul, as much as any other city, is blessed with abundant environmental resources, including its streams and forests. In particular, the recently restored Cheonggyecheon stream, located in the heart of the city, is considered one of the municipal government's most successful achievements. Within its first 10 months, the Cheonggyecheon stream and its 22 bridges and various themes has become one of the most popular spots in Seoul, drawing more than 30 million visitors from around the globe. Another important stream, the Jungryangcheon, begins in Pocheon and Yangju-gun, passes Uijeongbu, detours west at Songjeong-dong, Seongdong-gu until it joins the Cheonggyecheon in Sageun-dong before flowing into the Hangang. Jungryangcheon’s concrete bridge, which was built during the Japanese occupation, functions as gateway for traffic headed toward Gyeonggi-do. It is also the eastern backbone for north-south traffic in Seoul, connecting Gangbuk Expressway and Uijeongbu. The bike trail along the Jungryangcheon stream meets Seoul Forest in the downstream area. The entire region from the junction of the Jungryangcheon and the Cheonggyecheon, to Seoul Forest at the junction of Hanggang and Mt. Eungbongsan, forms a single ecological entity, and is protected as a “Wildlife Bird Protection Area.� The presence of this area insures that Seoul will have an annual population of migratory birds in the urban core. The Ttukseom district lies at the junction of the Cheonggyecheon and Jungryangcheon streams. The city of Seoul decided not to develop the area into a residential-commercial district in spite of a potential profit of 4 trillion won. Instead, the city chose to transform the Ttukseom area into a park to increase the amount of open space in northeast Seoul, balance development in Gangnam and Gangbuk, and improve the overall quality of life. Seoul Forest is a lively result of the collaborative efforts of the Seoul municipal government, the private sector, and the citizens to create a world class ecological park to represent Seoul. There are five distinct zones in the large-scale urban park: culture and entertainment, forest, nature-experience laboratory, wetland park, and the Hangang River waterfront park. In addition, there are a variety of facilities available to visitors including an outdoor amphitheater, Seoul Forest Plaza, ecology playground, bike trail and event centers. Seoul Forest and large-scale urban environmental restoration projects like the Cheonggyecheon help to recover the value of the ecosystem and reduce urban heat.

Unlike the Jungryangcheon in the northeast, the Hongjecheon stream in the northwest originates at Mt. Bukhansan, passes through Hongji-dong and Hongeun-dong in Seodaemun-gu, before flowing into the Hangang to form Nanjido island. According to the 1999 stream redevelopment plans, 18.94km of the Hangang river basin area was fully covered. The completion of the beltway over the Hongjecheon caused the stream to dry out. In response to the drying of the Hongjecheon, Seodaemun-gu is planning to direct underground water to flow in the now dry, 5.3km portion of the Hongjecheon. When stream maintenance work is completed, multi-use trails will connect the Hongjecheon to five theme parks including: Pyeonghwa Park, Noeul Park, Haneul Park, Nanjicheon Park and Nanji-Hangang Park around Sangam World Cup Stadium. Of these five theme parks, the 47-acre Haneul park, located on the most barren area of Nanjido island, is an open green park built on the site of a former garbage dump. The park was created by planting reeds, pampas grass, sundrops, and buckwheat to overcome the unfavorable conditions of the dry and infertile garbage dump. The park is an educational site that demonstrates how various forms of wild life and plants are born and proliferate. Five wind power generators supply power to the streetlights and visitor kiosks in the park, and are becoming the symbols of the environmental sustainability of the park. The Yangjaecheon stream, restored as a natural ecological stream, give Gangnam residents access to nature. Vegetation revetments were introduced to Yangjaechoen, using natural materials like stones and trees for the banks of the stream. The establishment of these environmentally-friendly revetments was followed by water quality improvement efforts for the Yangjaecheon. Streams and forests were lost and created in Seoul, which demonstrates the geographical advantage of Seoul, and its compatibility with nature and its native environment.



Regardless of the implementation policies, the birth of the Cheonggyecheon stream has provided a wonderful recreational area and a place to rest for the residents of Seoul. Three quarters of the width of the street were cut off to open up the stream. It may have had an adverse effect on vehicular traffic, but the number of visitors increased ten-fold, greatly increasing the efficacy of the street. The cars on the elevated freeway have been replaced by visitors along the waterfront. C2-2





The Yangjaecheon stream was restored ahead of the Cheonggyecheon in 1990. With the recovered ecological environment and added water-friendly functions, the stream has become a positive factor in improving the quality of life for the residents in the Seocho area in Gangnam. C3-20




The Jungryangcheon stream flows along the Dongbu expressway, the main traffic artery of eastern Seoul. For most Seoulites, images of the Jungryangcheon are closely linked to that of the Dongbu expressway. In the wake of the Cheonggyecheon stream restoration, the Jungryangcheon is becoming more important for ecological sustainability. C2-13



The Hongjecheon stream was once a popular picnic place for the students of Seoul in the 1970’s when clear waters flowed year-round. Since Naebu expressway, or the inner beltway, was constructed above the stream, it became a dry stream. Now, water flows for a short time and only after it rains. There is an ongoing effort to restore the stream to a natural state where water flows year-round. B1-9





The city of Seoul created Seoul Forest to increase the amount of open space in northeastern Seoul, to balance the development in Gangnam and Gangbuk, and to enhance the general quality of life. It is a result of the collaborative efforts of the Seoul municipal government, the private sector, and the citizens to create a world class ecological park to represent Seoul. C2-10





The site of Haneul Park was well-known as the tallest mountain of trash in the world, rising 95m above the nearby freeway. It was farm land for peanuts and vegetables before it was used as a dump site for 15 years. The mound was restored as a park during the 2002 World Cup preparation period. Reed, pampas grass, sundrops, and buckwheat were planted on the dry and infertile garbage dump to create Haneul Park. The park is an educational site that demonstrates how wildlife is born and proliferates. Five wind power generators supply power to the streetlights and visitor kiosks in the park. A2-7



History and Culture in the Architecture of Seoul






H i s t o r y

a n d

C u l t u r e

i n

t h e

A r c h i t e c t u r e

o f

S e o u l

Changmo Ahn

There are many different perspectives to appreciating a city. Kevin Lynch’s “The Image of the City” gives us five tools - Landmarks, Districts, Paths, Nodes, and Edges - to understand how people recognize a city. His approach exerts such a great influence on interpreting a newcomer’s cognitive maps that, even today, there has not been another work to compete with his view. Then the question becomes: “can his approach be applied to Seoul?” The short answer is “yes.” However, Seoul’s uniqueness in terms of history and life patterns makes it difficult to transplant Lynch’s scheme. This chapter, ‘History and culture through the lens of urban architecture,’ presents the reader with some thoughts on how we, not Kevin Lynch, should develop the ability to understand our city. The longer one lives in a neighborhood, the more their memory of the neighborhood becomes personalized or fragmented, even as it gets deeper and richer. It is difficult to overcome such restraints and even more difficult when the neighborhood and city are undergoing fast-paced transition. Seoul is one such city. Seoul is so large and rich in history that it is not easily identified as a homogenous entity. No single argument is strong enough to explain Seoul and that is why a number of different viewpoints must be considered. When we collect fragmented individual memories, it overcomes the limitations of individualism, and creates something which has not been experienced before. This chapter intends to frame the fabric of Seoul through the eyes of a long-time resident of Seoul, and those of an architect with personal experiences with the architecture and the city of Seoul. World-wide rapid transformations of urban areas in the modern era are fairly commonplace. It would be an understatement to say that Seoul is no exception to this global trend, considering the remarkable increase in physical size and population since the Joseon dynasty opened its ports to foreign countries in the 19th century. However, comparing Seoul to other metropolises in developed countries using statistics alone does not present the entire picture. The numbers hide the fact that Seoul, a city with a population of 10 million, has witnessed more historical interruptions than most of its overseas counterparts. Korea was forced to open its doors to foreign powerhouses and experienced colonization by the Japanese soon after. Although it was liberated at the close of World War II, the country was again divided into North and South, and has endured geographic isolation for the past 50 years.

Growth of the City and Change of Urban Structure The Korean economy is the product of an ‘Unbalanced Growth Strategy,’ which focused on incubating several “lead industries” to build a larger economy rather than a fair, nationwide distribution for balanced growth. Consequently, the development pattern of South Korea directed a large portion of available resources to selected metropolitan areas, especially Seoul. The policy is well reflected in the growth and change of the city. Until the 1990’s the urban planning policies of Seoul tended to adopt and manage the result of the rapid development. The recent move toward a “Balanced Development Strategy” and the subsequent efforts to decentralize Seoul’s functions, as well as other policies to help the local cities grow, are remedies to correct the distorted urban structures. The latest plan for the Gangbuk New Town, which will undoubtedly reshape the urban context of Seoul, is an effort to restore the balance of development between both sides of the Hangang. The roots of the “Unbalanced Growth Strategy” can be traced back to the Japanese occupation and a time when Korean cities were incorporated into the Japanese national development strategy. The features of Seoul, the largest city in colonized Korea, were defined by the change of its role under Japanese rule. The dynamics of domestic and international politics and the economy are key factors when determining the best site for the capital city of a nation. In the case of Hanyang, one of the old names of Seoul, it was designated as the capital of Joseon for domestic rather than international reasons. Thus, Seoul and other cities were connected via rivers or land routes, not by sea routes. Land was the main trade route to China, one of Korea’s long-time trade partners. The appearance of Seoul was largely determined by its relationship to the river rather than the sea, due to the early developmental stage of the Joseon Dynasty. By the late 19th century, Hanyang’s jurisdiction expanded beyond the walls, incorporating the village of Seongjeosipni, whose literal meaning is “Areas within 4km radius from the walls.” Seongjeosipni performed the role of the greenbelt in modern cities, particularly with respect to “Geumsanjedo,” a policy prohibiting illegal logging and burial in the vicinity of Hanyang. By extension, ports along the river developed in the later Joseon dynasty can be compared to today’s satellite cities around Seoul, which plays the role of the central node of the area. The new international order resulted in the changes in Seoul’s growth axis. Namdaemun quickly became the main entrance to Seoul as trade through Incheon increased. Prior to the emergence of Namdaemun, Seodaemun (the entrance of Uijuro leading to China) had been a favorite trading place, as depicted in Gyeonggi-gamyeongdo of the 19th century. However, Seodaemun was swiftly bypassed by Namdaemun as foreign products and culture poured through Incheon.


Incheon’s proximity to Seoul became even more important after Joseon opened its ports to foreign nations. In 1900, the Gyeong-in Railroad Line, which connected Namdaemun and Incheon via Yongsan, represented the new importance of Incheon. The pace of change accelerated after Korea capitulated to Japan in 1910; urbanization of Yongsan increased rapidly with the quick industrialization of Yeongdeungpo, forming Seoul's new growth axis. The boundary of Seoul, which at one point extended four kilometers past the walls, retreated to the walls during the annexation of Korea by Japan. When the Joseon dynasty was established in the 14th century, the walls surrounding Seoul ran along the ridgeline of four mountains; Bugaksan to the north, Mokmyeoksan to the south, Naktasan to the east and Inwangsan to the west. To protect the hillsides from illegal lodgings, burials and loggings in the vicinity of the city were strictly prohibited, similar to the greenbelts of today. In the early years of the Joseon, the jurisdiction of Seoul extended 4km from the palace from Yangju Songgyewon and Daehyeon to the east, Yanghwado Island and Goyang-deoksuwon to the west, and the Hangang river and Nodo to the south. There is no specific record on the northern boundary of Seoul, but given its location, it can be inferred that Mt. Bukhansan represented the northern border. According to Sasangeumpyodo, a picture from the King Yeongjo era, the eastern boundary of Hanyang was established along a stream flowing from Suyu-ri through Uidong to the Jungnyang-cheon stream. The Hangang River from Dumopo (now called Oksau-dong) to Yongsan marked the southern boundary. And to the west, a river flowing from Seongsan-dong to Mangwon-dong constituted the western boundary. To the north, the ridgeline from Bohyeonbong Peak to the Yang-cheon Stream made up the northern boundary of Seoul. These boundaries show that geographical features were critical factors in determining the boundaries of the city. However, the Japanese invasion of Korea in the 16th century made it virtually impossible to continue the prohibition of illegal logging and burial. In addition, residences began to form outside the four mountains of inner Seoul and trade on the river began to flourish. These changes caused the expansion of Seoul’s jurisdiction to a distance of 4 km from the palace. As stated earlier, the borders of the city were retained until the later Joseon dynasty. In 1895, Hanseong-bu was reorganized into Hanseong-gun, but a year later, reverted back to the original Hanseong-bu. However, after the annexation of Korea by Japan in 1910, Hanseong-bu, renamed Gyeongseong-bu, came under the control of Gyeonggi-do. After the integration of Hanseong-bu into Gyeonggi-do, the city area inside the wall was divided into 5 bu or boroughs and 36 bang or districts. The area outside the wall was reorganized into 8 myeon or townships. Two years later, the effective jurisdiction of Gyeongseong-bu was reduced through the dissolution of 5 boroughs and the incorporation of some of the Gyeongseong-bu area into Goyang-gun. In 1936, much of the land incorporated into Goyang-gun was returned to the Gyeongseong-bu borough, expanding the jurisdiction of Gyeongseong-bu significantly. The redrawing of borough lines in 1936 was not limited to the recovery of Goyang-gun. A number of the


neighborhoods from Gimpo-gun and Siheung-gun were also brought under the control of Gyeongseong-bu. The number of newly added neighborhoods was one eup (small township), eight myeon’s (collection of villages) and 71 ri’s (village), excluding the partial incorporation of five other ri’s. As a result of the 1936 adjustment, the area under Seoul’s jurisdiction became 135,355,032m2 By August 15, 1949, Seoul had incorporated an additional 134,415,609m2 from Goyang-gun and Siheung-gun increasing its footprint to 269,770,641m2 Seoul continued to grow in area, taking over 12 myeons and 89 ris from Yangju-gun and Gimpo-gun in 1963, further increasing its jurisdiction to 613.04km2 The city reached 627.06km2 when neighboring districts including: Gwangmyeong-ri, Seomeyon, Siheung-gun, Gyeonggi-do, Gupabal-ri, Jingwanwae-ri, Sindo-myeon, Goyang-gun and Gyeongi-do were brought under Seoul’s authority on July 1, 1973. The first alteration to Seoul’s urban fabric since the Joseon dynasty opened its ports was the relocation of the main palace from Gyeongbok Palace to Deoksu Palace early in the 1900’s. This was a result of the establishment of the Korean Empire, which launched various urban development projects to transform Seoul into a modern state. The opening of a new road crossing Hwangtohyeon, restructuring Seoul around Deoksu Palace, and constructing European-style buildings in Deoksu Palace, were just some of the changes brought about by the Korean Empire. The intent of these projects was to demonstrate Seoul’s willingness to become a modern state. However, most of the ‘modernization projects’ by the Korean Empire were abruptly terminated when the Eulsaneugyak treaty was concluded in 1905 with Japan, the winner of the Russo-Japanese War. The most prominent change to urban Seoul during the process of the colonization of the Korean Empire in 1905 was the construction of Sinyongsan. The new urban core followed a series of new development features, such as the opening of Yongsan Railroad Station in 1900 and the establishment of a Japanese garrison in 1908. Accordingly, Seoul’s borderline was changed to accommodate the new downtown in Yongsan. Particularly, the Gyeongwon Railroad Line drew a new curved boundary along the banks of Hangang-river, which was needed to support railroad construction and protect Yongsan from floods. Seoul began to have a definitive borderline with the construction of riverbanks.

Parallel to the Sin-yongsan downtown development, open spaces at the foothill of Namsan were developed quickly to form Huamdong and Cheongpadong for Japanese communities. New discussion for planning policies to resolve the overcrowding and shortage of housing began to appear on the agenda in the 1920s, as the areas between the old and new town were becoming saturated with dwellings. With the development of capitalism in Korea, the housing sector quickly became commercialized. As commercial real estate costs increased around the Bukchon district, urban poverty issues began to appear. Most of the urban squatters were formed on hillsides.

These squatter residents were referred to as “Tomakmin” and they settled around Sindang-dong, Hongje-dong and Dohwa-dong. While the existence of urban squatters could have been attributed to the disparity of income, the housing shortage was becoming the biggest problem for the city. A two-fold approach was implemented to resolve the housing shortage. The first option was to enlarge the city to accommodate and provide civil services for the ever-increasing population. The second option was to increase the number of residential units through large-scale project housings. While slums and residential developments are entirely different in terms of urban planning, both serve to transform the urban structure. Seoul came to rely heavily on the industrial output from the Yeongdeungpo district after it became a colonized city. Joseon Housing Corporation, a forerunner of the Korea National Housing Corporation, was organized in 1941 to supply housing units in a stabilized manner. The corporation constructed residential units in Dorim-dong and Daebang-dong for the working-class, another housing complex with excellent views for Japanese residents in Heukseok-dong and Sangdodong, and a complex for Korean residents in the eastern portion of Seoul. After the liberation of Seoul, the city experienced an explosive population increase which prompted Seoul’s spatial expansion. In 1914, Seoul grew from 16.5km2 to 36.18km2 when it incorporated Sinyongsan, and further increased in size to 133.94km2 with the incorporation of Yeongdeungpo. The area of Seoul was 268.35km2 and 613.04km2 in 1949 and 1963, respectively. The area south of Hangang River was incorporated into Seoul in 1963.

shift. The Land Compartmentalization and Rearrangement Project of the 1970’s could be differentiated from the 1960’s when the land reclamation project was launched under the “Yeouido and Hangang Riverside Development Plan.” The main objectives of this plan were to establish riverbanks to control the chronic flooding, provide road access to the top of the riverbanks, and supply residential units of varying densities, as well as open spaces and infrastructures.

The main reason behind these consecutive expansions, realignments, and changes in the urban structure was the rapid increase in population. Prior to 1945, the total population of Seoul was approximately one million. It declined to 900,000 with the departure of Japanese residents following the liberation of Korea in 1945. However, it rebounded very quickly to 1.48 million in 1949, 4 million in 1967, 5.5 million in 1970, 6.90 million in 1975, 8.40 million in 1980, and 10 million in 1990. A series of urban policies were adopted to address the problems caused by the ballooning population. The planning policies were constantly revised through trial and error. Seoul’s first task was to secure new land for housing through the Land Compartmentalization and Rearrangement Project. Seoul’s policymakers launched a series of full-scale development projects along the Hangang River in the 60’s when it became evident that the projects in Gangbuk alone could not keep up with the increasing population. Subsequently, the southern side of the Hangang River was transformed into a residential complex in the 1970’s.

Simultaneously, greenbelts were installed at the periphery of Seoul. In October 1970, the city of Seoul introduced greenbelt policies to the areas within a 15km radius of city hall, with the greenbelts varying in width from 1 to 9km. On January 19, 1971, the Urban Planning Act was revised to provide legal basis for the new greenbelt policies. With the help of legislative support, the horizontal expansion of Seoul was reined in, and the era of compact vertical development came to Seoul. The Gangnam development and the new greenbelts became the starting point for the restructuring of the urban fabric of Seoul, which had been based on the “Master Plan for Gyeongseong” during the Japanese occupation. Gangnam was vacant land because it had been geographically cut off from the developed Gangbuk. Yeongdeungpo, the Gangnam area which had been developed during the extension of Gangbuk, could not be the focal point of development since it was located in the western portion of Gangnam. For this reason, Gangnam was being developed independently from Gangbuk, and the link connecting the two sides of the river were the bridges. The development pattern of the Gangnam area became closely related to the new status of Gangnam and Gangbuk, which followed Gangnam’s development. The ‘Tri-nuclei city’ plan was the planning policy designed to respond to the possible challenges inherent in the development of Gangnam. It sought to distribute the population and businesses of Gangbuk to other parts of Seoul, by transforming Seoul from a city with a single urban core into a city with three urban cores.

The Land Compartmentalization and Rearrangement Project was expedited on the southern side of the Hangang River when the population of Seoul reached 5.50 million. Yeongdong districts one and two and the Cheonho and Jamsil districts were designated as apartment districts. This designation made a profound difference by focusing on compact and concentrated land use, which was not the norm for the Land Compartmentalization and Rearrangement Project. By abandoning the horizontal expansions of the 1960’s, Seoul’s planning policies were at a critical point in the paradigm

As a result of the development project, the Hangang’s boundary was redrawn. Some islands were reshaped and some even disappeared from the map. It was during this period of time that numerous bridge projects were undertaken. In the early days of bridge construction, the bridges were named after the sequence in which each was completed. For example, the Hangang-daegyo 1 bridge was built first, followed by the Hangang-daegyo 2, and finally the Hangang-daegyo 3. Initially, the south side of Hangang, which was called Gangnam, lacked solid connections in terms of the urban context to the other side of the river. Thus, the timing and location of bridge construction was decided by the relationship of the newly developed portion of Gangnam area to the corresponding area of Gangbuk. Today, the traffic flow between the two sides of the Hangang is controlled by 27 bridges. In turn, the traffic web of 27 bridges is controlled by 88 expressways and the Gangbyeon Expressway. The construction of expressways on both sides of the river impeded access to the river and turned the river into a path for traffic rather than a path for water.


Change of Urban Issue in the Historic City The modifications of urban structures during Japanese occupation had incurred the spatial expansion of urbanized area as well as restructuring of old urban cores as urbanization proceeded. Changes of the existing urban fabric became more obvious while Japanese government continued to shape Korea as their colony. Japanese communities, which were mainly located in Namchon area, southwest of Namsan(Mt), began to move to new large-scale residential developments on former public lots, in order to accommodate the needs for Japanese institutions and residences for the employees. The European-style architecture and collective housings instilled the new wave of development pattern of residential lots. Meanwhile, another face of changes was from to supply the housing lots, which were in short. Reclaimed lots on the covered stream or river and hillside development can be mentioned as the foremost examples of increasing housing lots. These techniques were one of the easy methods in securing extra residences without expanding city’s jurisdictions. Urban sqauters quickly spread all over to Seoul, especially witout sufficient supply of new residential lots and housing units. Liberation and Korean War pulled numerous immigrants from rural area of the county, and they came to cluster themselves due to their lack of connections. Haebangchon’s were one of the most notable features out of many unique development patters of this era; Haebangchon is the most prime example of urban squattes of Seoul. Eventhough the retreat of Japanese at the end of WWII increased additional housing supply, the housing situation only became worse. The formulation of Haebangchon and urban squatters were the direct consequences of such social phenomenon. Haebangchon, implying ‘liberation village’, was built by the immigrants from North Korea and foreign countries on the hillside of Namsan (Mountain). Along with the mulitiplication of urban slums, some evacuated areas, which were intentionally vacated for defensive purposes, were also created. The evacuated area was created to protect the city from air bombing. Regardless to the initial intent of the design, the plat parcel became the perfect place for urban squatters, especially in conjunction with absence of administrative authorities and shortage of homes. The vacated road between Jongmyo (Royal Shrine) to Toegyero, 50m wide and 1,200m long, was the representive squatter place. However, other vacated areas like Cheongpadong, Sugye-dong, Wonhyoro-Yongmun-dong and several inner city areas were taken by squatters. Out of those vacated roads, the portion from Pil-dong to Sindang-dong, and from Seoul Station to Hoehyeon-dong became today’s Toegyero in 1963. Seoul, a planned city of 600 years, had gone through some minor modifications at the will of Japanese occupation governments and experienced rapid urbanization, including Sigu Reorganizaion project of Japanese Government-General. Considering the effects that a war has brought, those modifications were a lot peaceful and minor. A war shook


the fundamental structure of urban context. In case of the vacated area, where Seun Arcade stands today, it was in preparation to a predictable course of war actions. However, Korean War was not something predicted, and the adaptation of urban context did not happened until the post-war reconstruction took place. The disappearance of historic district from Gwancheol-dong is one of the examples how the city adapted itself in the course of reconstruction. The effect on urban fabric from vacated area could be understood in the lieu of the existing context, but the reconstruction of post-war era accompanied was arbiturary. Division of Korea and cold war with conjunction with McCarthysm government left a deep stigma to Seoul. Namsan (Mountain) was the first on the list of such spaces. Namsan (Mountain), one the four inner mountains of Seoul, had been regarded as shrine, since it was believed to be the guardian against all of the evil forces. Therefore, it was not allowed to even for a cemetery. However, such belief and repect toward Namsan (Mt) was shatterd when Joseon dynasty collapsed; slopes of Namsan(Mt) were graded for Japanese residences, and parks were built for the sake of entertainment for Japanese. After the Japanese Shrine was demolished after liberation, military dictators turned Namsan(Mt) into a horrible place of human right violation. President Lee’s regime set up a plan to replace the Japanese Shrine with the statue of President Lee. Furthermore, they wanted to build the Parliarment at the site where Mr. Lee’s statue can look down. However, 5.16 miliatry coups stopped these plans from being realized. Later then, Namsan Amphithere and Namsan Public Library were built as tokens of ‘spaces for people’. Of course, the adminstrations did what they want to do in Namsan (Mountain, people’s favorite place; plan for 5.16 Revolution Memorial Park was attempted as well as other anti-communist institutions such as Korea Freedom League and National Culture Center. All of these anti-communist projects were to make Namsan into another Shrine, Shrine of anti-communism. Besides of these buildings and plans, 1.21 Assault - North Korea’s attempt for President Park’s life - became the direct cause for ‘Namsan fortification plan’. As a consequence, Namsan was exploited by the administrations. After 1.21 Assualt, Mayor Kim Hyeonok announced the construction of Skyway for the purpose of “Tourism and security”. Mayor Kim released another construction project for 8 underground bombshelter. According to ‘Namsan Fortificaiton Plan’ in 1969, underground arterials were to built for the four directions, and Namsan Tunnel 1 and 2 were also included in the fortification plan. The two turnels could be also utilized as bomb shelfters for 300,000 ~ 400,000 people in case of war. Namsan Trunnels were to serve military purpose, rather than transportation purpose to connect Gangnam and Gangbuk. Bridges over Hangang (River) were not free from military viewpoints; Jamsu-gyo(Bridge) was constructed almost at the water surface level to be covered from bombing, and the simplistic designs of the Hangang(River) bridges, which are criticized for its lack of easthetics, were chosen for faster recovery in case they were destroyed by enemy bombing.

At the later days of President Park’s regime, a new administrative capital city was in the review for the hope of being free from North Korea’s military threat, but it was not realized due to President Park’s sudden death. Instead, Gwacheon Government Complex was built altogether with Gwacheon new town. Dongjakdaegyo(Bridge) could not be completed due to the strong opposition fo U.S. Army Garrison in Yongsan. As stated previsouly, the strongest engine for liftover was ‘Redevelopment’ not the innate urban dynamics. The urban function and structure was in total different outfit due to the rapid urbanization and instrialization after 1960’s. The patchwork-type planning policies in 1960’s, which lack experiences and resources, began to malfunction here and there in 1970’s; squatters were all over the inner city and many heights, the sprawled city structure was not equipped with sufficient transporataion capabilities. In the response of these challenges, Redevelopment projects were brought into. Initially, Redevelopment projects targetted to resolve the urban challenges, restore the city functions and best possible use of land. Various redevelopment projects were not fully implemented until the advent of 1988 Seoul Olympic Games. The Olypic Games in 1988 was the most determining force of various redevelopment projects. Korean government, which felt the needs for successful Olympic Games to put Korea in the world stage, initiated sets of strong pressure for the success of Olympic Games. Comprehensive Hangang (River) Development plan were launched to improve the quality of housing units along Hangang (River), which was almost deserted after development projects in Gangnam. Inner city squatters and shacks in the riverbanks became the subject of the redevelopment projects together with new town development in Sangye and Mok-dong.

discussion. Sukjeongmun, the northern gate of the Seoul wall, was returned to the residents. All of these changes above indicate that the residents of Seoul has grown enough to take care of history, culture, urban problems and environment - issues have been ignored in the process of rapid industrialization. Municipalization in the middle of 1990’s was another milestone for new urban structures of Seoul - from a city with single core to a city with multi cores. With the inception of municipalizaiton, two of Seoul’s districts, each with about the same capability of a large local city, began to formulate its own nucleui. Seoul’s spatial structure is facing a new wave of reorganization with 25 urban centers of each Gu (District) being overlapped with the existing multi-nuclei structure. After Korea was liberated from Japan in 1945, Seoul benchmarked many examples of foreign cities to circumvent the lack of experience and resources to address the problems of rapid urbanization. The urban problems of Seoul during post-WWII era, postKorean War, and economic development period were not adepuately resolved due to the poor quantity-oriented planning practices and conventions. The paths that Seoul took so far have been a kind of prototype procedures, which can be found anywhere else in the Third World, and that is the reason what Seoul does today can present a new lesson to the following cities in the developing countries.

The appearance of Seoul as a historic city was changed greatly while it was going under various events like opening ports, colonization, liberation, war and economic development. Seoul lost a lot of historic and cultural assets while it took changes for granted. The trend was about to reverse; “Seoul’s 600th Anniversary Festival” to recognize the value of Seoul as a historic city. As “Namsan (Mountain) Restoration Movement” being settled down on track, Namsan Foreigner Apartment was demolished, and Cheonggyecheon (Stream) was restored. People in Seoul welcome Cheonggyecheon(Stream)’s return wholeheartedly, even though it was in the form of concrete channel, not the natural open stream. Maybe the reflection of the sad history to cover up the stream due to lack of resources played a significant role behind the ardourous welcome. In addition, it is hard to deny that the citizen of Seoul took pride out of the revived stream. It is not only environment, but also history and culture to be recovered after being ignored for the pursuit of economic development. After the 600th Anniversary celebration in 1994, awareness of Seoul as a historic city has been enhanced. Changdeokgung (Palace) was registered as World Culture Heritage, and multiple cultural history restorations are on the way. Recently, Japanese-plagued Gwanghwamun was re-established, and the restoration project of Yukjogeori, the government complex in Joseon’s times, is under


The Gates and Boundaries of Seoul Changmo Ahn


In spite of its long history, the physical size of Seoul has remained almost constant. The first wave of change was a result of the Japanese invasion in the 16th century. Although the invasion caused little physical change to the city, the density of Seoul increased in the vicinity of the palace. Later in the Joseon dynasty, the developing commerce around Seoul increased the significance of the Hangang River in people’s everyday lives. It has been less than 100 years since Seoul began to record its physical growth. One hundred years is a small segment in Seoul’s long legacy but the experiences of the last 100 years - opening ports, liberation from the Japanese rule, the Korean War and rapid economic development - exerted a profound impact on the city’s unique growth axis. Now, all these features have become inseparable parts of the city. In the past, the growth of cities was restrained by geography; this is no longer the case thanks to modern improvements in technology. Horizontal expansion was once thought to be the solution to Seoul’s urban problems. However, soon after the flaws of horizontal expansion became obvious, the expansion trend was halted by the installation of greenbelts. With the lessons of past experiences, the importance of “smart growth” became clear and that is the direction in which Seoul is headed. In the midst of frequent boundary modifications, the basic justification for those changes was to secure residences and transportation for the citizens of Seoul. The conventional means of transportation, trams and buses, have now been replaced with cars and subways. Seoul’s old gates and jurisdictional borderlines have lost much of their relevance in today’s metropolitan setting. In today’s Seoul, each individual defines their own city and each has their own ways of recognizing the city. Depending on their mode of transportation, the gates of Seoul can be a toll gate or it can be the entrance to a subway station. Transportation technologies tend to diminish the scope of spatial cognizance while increasing accessibility, by shortening the functional distance between two points. The bigger a city gets, the more anonymous the society becomes. And the more the anonymous the society becomes, the more important it is to establish one’s own scope of living. This is why people find it necessary to have their own perspectives with which to observe Seoul. No one can teach us what Seoul is like. The complete picture of Seoul can only be seen when all the fragmented recollections of Seoul are assembled collectively.




The Present Days of City Wall A view of the eastern portion of Seoul from Mt. Naksan confirms that Seoul is a fortified city. Dongdaemun, a major node for boundary determination, lies at the intersection of the curved walls along the ridgelines of Naksan and the plain. The gentle slope of Naksan and the plain between Dongdaemun and Gwanghuimun make it difficult to differentiate whether an area is inside or outside the walls in the eastern part of Seoul. The urban context from the inside of the wall was left to stretch outside the wall. In 1926, Gyeongseong Stadium, which is now Dongdaemun Stadium, was built on the Hullyeonwon (or training center lot), and the remainder of the Hullyeonwon site was developed into schools and government agencies. Eventually, high-rise commercial buildings, like the Doota and Milliore, replaced the schools and government agencies, forming Seoul’s new skyline. B2b-5


Suffering Fortification Namsan’s fortifications and walls from Mt. Mongmyeoksan to Namdaemun were forced to undergo several artificial changes, despite their location away from downtown. For example, on the Mt. Namsan fortification, the Joseon Shito Shrine, a Japanese shrine dedicated to deceased patriots, was built and later taken down after liberation. Then President Lee Seungman’s statue was erected on the same site followed by a plan for the Namsan parliament house. Finally, the Namsan botanical garden (built with tropical plants sent by soldiers dispatched to Vietnam) and the Korean Children's Center provided people with beautiful views and rest areas. B2d-4




Dongdaemun and the Disappearance of Boundaries Of the fortifications of Seoul, Dongdaemun has rare and contrasting features. The walls and fortifications around Dongdaemmun were severely damaged, but the gate itself has been exceptionally well-preserved. Inside Dongdaemun, Hullyeonwon used to sit on the gentlest terrain in Seoul. As various urban facilities were constructed on the Hullyeonwon site, the fortifications were completely demolished. B2b-9



Two Gates: Namdaemun, the Gate of the Joseon Dynasty, and Seoul Station, the Gate of the Modern Seoul. Namdaemun, the gate of Seoul and the center of commerce, was bypassed by Seoul Station when the ports were opened. Subsequently, Namdaemun was forced to adapt to its new role as the gate of the old city. However, the road from Seoul Station to Namdaemun continues to enjoy its honored status as the premier boulevard of Seoul. The recent opening of the Namdaemun lawn plaza reconfirmed that the city belongs to the people rather than the automobiles, which for a while, had taken precedence over the people. With the opening of the plaza, Namdaemun has once again opened its arms to the people. B2a-1



Seodaemun Site Unlike Dongdaemun and Namdaemun, Seodaemun was small in physical size. In addition, the gate, which gave its name to the intersection at the site, had to be demolished due to the geographical limitations preventing the construction of a detour road. It is not easy to tell exactly where Seodaemun stood. There is nothing but a small memorial stone to indicate the Seodaemun site. However, upon closer examination, one can see a lump going from the inside of the walls to the outside. That lump is an artifact of the walls which were built according to the ridgelines. B2a-14


The Old and New Road: Eulji-ro Meets Toegye-ro Gwanghimun, which used to be called Sigumun, meaning “gate for the corpses,� was moved to the side of the road when Toegye-ro was opened. Eulji-ro, which was renewed in 1910, became the artery for the development of eastern Seoul, joining Toegyero across the walls and connecting to Ttukseom.



The Walls on Mt. Inwangsan Since most of the walls were built along the mountain ridge surrounding the city, there are only a few places where the contour-adapting walls abutted the plains. This characteristic of the walls left several locations where, in spite of rapid economic development, one can easily find the remnants of the old walls of Seoul. Of these spots, the walls on Inwangsan were erected for the defensive purposes of Seoul and as borderlines. These days, the walls of Inwangsan function as a hiking trail for visitors. B1-3


The Walls of Downtown Some portions of the walls in downtown Seoul were used to support the harsh life of rural immigrants, while others were taken down for road construction.



The City Embracing the Hangang River The current boundary of Seoul was formed when Seoul incorporated the Gangnam region in 1963. From the time the city was established around the Cheonggyecheon stream, it took 600 years for Seoul to encircle the Hangang. However, the Hangang River is not as vigilant as it was during the Cold War. At that time, the Hangang was the river of silence. During the Joseon dynasty, the estuary of the Hangang including Mapo, Dumopo and Ttukseom, were ports of commerce for products to and from Chungcheong-do, Jeolla-do, and Gyeongsang-do. But the estuaries were not available for people and commerce after Korea was divided into North and South. The “Comprehensive Hangang Development Plan� envisioned the Hangang as a place of leisure activities with ferries and well-organized riverbanks. However, the Hangang was too large to simply be a leisure space, separated from the daily lives of the citizens. Barbed wire is still visible on both sides of the Hangang from the estuary to Ilsan. The Cold War has not yet died on the Hangang and spring will not come until it does.



Connections between New Boundaries The resorts and sandy plains disappeared from the banks of the Hangang River when it was redeveloped for the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Flood control riverbanks were expanded, new riverside parks replaced the resorts, and the Hangang white beach, a popular place for political events, was covered with concrete blocks. In the past, the Hangang contained Seoul physically, but today, the Hangang is contained by artificial concrete blocks. Meanwhile, the bridges over the Hangang have become the medium for Gangnam’s development, the direct result of Seoul’s spatial expansion during its economic development. A2-19


Recovery: The Revival of the Sandy Plains of the Hangang This is a photo of the Hangang River. The scene in the photo is new to many people who only remember Hangang as the post-comprehensive development era river of concrete blocks. The revival of the sandbanks on the riverside, which disappeared in the hectic preparations for the Olympic Games, is an exciting prospect. All this reminds us of the power of nature. The sandy plains are not the only things in need of revival. Only a few people recall that many islands, including Bamseom, Jeojado and Jamsildo, were destroyed in the wake of the comprehensive Hangang development. They disappeared as a result of the reclamation of the Hangang’s water surface and construction of the Yunjungje levee in Yeouido. Fortunately, Bamseom’s ecosystem is beginning to flourish under the Seogang-daegyo bridge. Man-made boundaries, built for the sake of human greed, are being rebuilt by the force of nature.


The Boundary of Gangbuk in 1936 In 1936, Seoul’s boundaries expanded to the Hongjecheon stream, the Hangang River and the Jungryangcheon stream to the west, south and east, respectively. Water constituted the natural constraints of urban expansion. Residences filled Seoul to the very edges of these boundaries. Motorways appeared and in the 1990’s, trails were created. This is the accumulation of those boundaries.


The Boundary of Gangnam in the 1980’s In terms of jurisdiction, it took 50 years for the city to reach beyond the barrier of the Hangang River, after reaching it in 1914. Even in the 1970’s with the development of Gangnam, Seoul was just beginning to overcome the barrier of the Hangang. Jamsil, the first community developed in Gangnam, is now ready for another change since its construction 30 years ago. The current apartment buildings will be replaced with high-rise apartment complexes, creating a new vista for the Hangang.


The apartment buildings shot up on the hills of Seoul are the result of the residential and environmental improvement projects. These buildings, therefore, suggest that the area was a slum before.



Boundaries of Sky The four inner mountains - Bukaksan, Naksan, Inwangsan and Namsan have been more than the “boundaries of the earth.” For many years, they were also the “boundaries of sky” but this is no longer the case. They were places where low-income residents gathered and formed squatter communities. Squatters were widespread in the peripheries of Seoul and were the subjects of “slum clearance.” This is how Sanggye-dong and Mok-dong were developed. Even today, Guryong village exists on the other side of a luxurious residential-commercial complex in Dogok-dong. Bongcheon-dong is no exception. While its name means “the supports of heaven,” Bongcheon-dong was one of the largest slums of Seoul, and many of its residents relocated from downtown. Now being redeveloped by a residential and environmental improvement project, the sky of Bongcheon-dong is being shaped and supported by high-rise apartments rather than the topography of the terrain. B3-13


Old Roads Sang Koo Lee


The old roads of Seoul, like the city itself, resemble nature in that they flow like water. As water originating from Mt. Baekaksan, north of the city, flows southward along the valley, water from Mt. Namsan, south of the city, flows north until they merge at the Cheonggyecheon Stream. Similarly, the old roads flow from Bukchon to the south and from Namchon to the north to converge at Jongno Street. They flow naturally along the slope of the land formation. The main artery roads spread out into the alleys of villages like blood flowing from an artery into a capillary vessel. While the main roads run along soft curving lines from north to south and from south to north, the alleys form a tangled web of sharp turns. As the major roads flow naturally along with nature, the complicated, tangled alleys represent the complicated lives of the people of Seoul over the centuries. Alleys grow segment by segment. When a house is built a long distance from a primary road, a smaller road extends a segment to reach the house. When another house is built next to the house, that road is extended by one more segment. As more neighbors are added, more segments are added to the existing road. Therefore, roads take their shape as they grow. The widths also vary depending on the situation. They look complicated and chaotic but reveal the evolution of a neighborhood. They also show the process of people making their own place in their own way. The old roads of Seoul are in harmony with nature. They have been shaped primarily by the self-regulated rules of the places. They would never have been generated if the city had been left alone without any plan. Rather, they were generated by carefully selecting locations and establishing the firm and basic frame of a “trunk road system.� It took 10 years before Hanyang became the permanent capital city of Joseon Dynasty. It was a long and complicated procedure. Although Taejo, the founder of the dynasty, settled in Hanyang at the beginning of the dynasty, Jeongjong, the second King, returned to the old capital city of Gaeseong. Eventually, the third king Taejong moved back to Hanyang, and Seoul has been the capital of the country for more than 600 years since. The trunk road system of Seoul was a prominent feature of the city. What is now Sejongno Road, an area designated for official buildings during the Joseon Dynasty, was 60m wide and is now called Jongno Street. This area was a mostly residential and commercial area back then and was more than 20m wide, as was the Namdaemunno Street. Jongno ran east-west across downtown to connect the Seodaemun Gate at the west end of the citadel and the Dongdaemun at the east end. Namdaemunno, starting from Namdaemun Gate at the south end, was extended to Jonggak, and Sejongno stretched from Gyeongbok Palace to Jongno Street. The artery road system of Seoul was quite unique for a medieval city of the 14th century. Many travel journals recorded that the system was very impressive even to the eyes of the westerners who visited Seoul at the end of the Joseon Dynasty. This excellent road system, in fact, played an important role in the development of the city from a population of 200 thousand to 10 million, without losing the basic functions of the city. The uniqueness which distinguishes Seoul from other cities can be found in the physical features that resemble nature, and in the alleys where the basis for living was formulated by the people themselves. The features of Seoul that has made it the city it is are deeply imprinted in the old roads and alleys.



Jongno / Finding Old Stores Jongno Street was the street that represented Seoul from the beginning. It was a busy downtown area which was a very popular gathering place for people from both Bukchon and Namchon at the north and south of Jongno respectively. The Joseon dynasty, in its early era, established hangnang, which was comparable to arcades of today, on both sides of Jongno. The hangnang lined up 20m wide on Jongno and added grandeur to the city. Building activities were controlled to maintain the width of the street by declaring that no building could invade the right of way of Jongno. Yukeuijeon, or consolidated stores, were formed on what is now Jongno i-ga. The street prospered and grew into the best commercial area in the country. The commercial development of Jongno continued during the Japanese colonization. Hwasinsanghoe, the first modern department store built and owned by a Korean, was built on the north-east corner of the Jongno Intersection where Jongno Tower is standing now. Even during the Japanese ruling period, Jongno was the center of commerce for the Korean people and competed against its Japanese counterpart, Honmazi. Until the 1970s, Jongno was home to the Hwasin and Shinshin department stores, and the street maintained its fame as the busiest street in Seoul. B2b-32


Excavation of the Site of Markets The original features of a part of the Jongno of early Joseon period, was recently uncovered at the construction site of a high-rise building. The remains of the burned down wooden floor of Sijeon-Hangnag, or arcade, of the early Joseon Dynasty was found in its original shape, 4.3m below ground level. It allows us to visualize the scene in which people of that era busily walked around on a street that existed 4.3m below the current street surface. Also confirmed during the excavation was not only the shape of the Jongnodaero, but also the fact that those small alleys at the north of the arcade had had a very long history. It is astonishing to see that the current Jongno and small alleys that exist in front of us are much the same as they were in the Joseon era. Indeed, these features represent the 600-year history of the city of Seoul.



Pima-gil While Jongno is the street that represents Seoul, the Pima-gil Alley, the back road that runs parallel with Jongno Street, has characteristics of a typical city alley. There are many versions of the story behind the origins of the name Pima-gil. The most popular one goes like this: It was not comfortable for the populace to walk on Jongno Street because it was frequented by high-ranking officers very often on a horseback. The populace preferred to use the alternative back alley to avoid the horses on Jongno, hence the Pima-gil, which literally means “a road to avoid a horse.” Therefore, Pima-gil developed into a road with many restaurants and bars to whet the appetites of the passersby. This tradition continues today: There are sign boards at every corner which lead into the alley that spells “Pimat” instead of Pima, because “mat” means taste in Korean. Unfortunately, many parts of the Pima-gil Alley have disappeared. The one on the south side of Jongno has disappeared to make room to expand the width of the road, and a new park has taken over parts of the northern Pima-gil. Recently the structure of Pima-gil Alley has been changing due to the “Jongno development plan.” In the past, it was impossible to build a large building on Jongno due to the Pima-gil Alley. However, in the early 20th century a YMCA was built and it was later joined by the Jongno Tower at the end of the 20th century. Now, the existence of Pima Alley is threatened by the continued development. B2b-32



Insadong-gil Insadong-gil is known as the road that bears the most Korean character. It has been known as “Mary’s Alley” to foreigners and is one of the most popular tourist areas of Seoul. Insadong was the best residential area for powerful families until it started to deteriorate with the decline of the Joseon Dynasty in the early 20th century. Then the area changed to a residential area for the middle class, and large houses started to be replaced by clusters of smaller urban style traditional houses in the late 1920s. Along with Buchon, Insa-dong represented typical residential areas until the early 1970’s. What began as a place to sell leftover goods and properties salvaged from the upper class residences, became shops for antiques, old paintings, framing, paper and brushes. Insadong-gil, where many small traditional Korean houses and stores are clustered, has undergone many changes over the years. Along with the campaign for a “No car street” in 1994, Insadong-gil began to see massive crowds on the weekends. With the increasing numbers of young people, traditional businesses such as art supply stores and galleries began to disappear and the area was quickly commercialized. A large commercial building called Samji replaced the 12 stores on the same site. At times struggling and compromising between the ideal of preserving history and the reality of modernization and commercialism, Insadong-gil is seeking another chance at transformation. B2b-24





Street View of the East Side of Insadong-gil Insadong area, in general, retains the structure of a Joseon dynasty street. A portion of Insadong-gil was expanded in the early 1970’s following the demolition of the old Sinmindangsa Building, located at the entrance of Anguk-dong, and a small park was formed on that spot. The trees planted on the east side corner of Anguk-dong marks the expansion. At the same time, the city established a plan to expand the east side of the Insadong-gi, and the planned line of the right of way was established. The planned expansion was delayed for 20 years, and ironically, the inability to implement the plan helped protect the area by preserving it. Since construction of a new building was not permitted, the old traditional houses remained there as they were. Small stores with the characteristic of old Insadong in the old buildings, lend an old and antiquated atmosphere to the area. The west side of the Insadong area, however, experienced many changes during the same period. The city planning line was abolished in 2002 and was replaced by a new District Renewal Plan. B2b-24




Inside of Chebu-dong Alley Although Bukchon is said to represent a traditional Korean residential area, almost all of the houses we see today are urban-style traditional houses that were actually built after the 1920s. These houses were developed by private developers in mass quantities. These urban traditional houses are in modernized residential districts where the alleys are straight and regular. This is a marked contrast to the alleys of the Joseon Dynasty which were curved and irregular. The shape of the original narrow and winding alleys, which are rare enough to be designated as cultural heritage for preservation, is like a labyrinth that makes a sudden turn here and a soft curve there. The alley may narrow down at one point only to widen out again at another point. You can see these ever-changing alleys in chebu-dong, a residential area located behind the Geumcheongyo Bridge market. This does not mean, however, that there are many houses that deserve to be designated as cultural assets. Many are not much different from the urban style houses in the Bukchon area. However, Chebu-dong has a long and undisturbed history, and unlike Bukchon, Chebu-dong’s changes have been evolutionary rather than revolutionary. This may be the last village in Seoul that did not experience an abrupt change due to large scale developments. Although there was a small scale land division in this village, and the multi-family housing boom in the middle of the 1990’s swept the area, and the streets around the village were expanded - we can still meet the alleys that remain true to their past in Chebu-dong. B2a-20



Sulla-gil The Sulla-gil still remains along the west wall of Jongmyo Royal Shrine, which was used by the Sullaggun Patrol to protect from fire and crime. It was a dirt road that was less than 2m wide. When the alley was blocked after the Korean War, it was used as backyards for neighborhood houses. The Sulla-gil was reinstated when a 1.5km stretch of the alley from Gwonnong-dong to Bongik-dong was paved to make a one-lane, one-way street in 1995. At the beginning of 2006, the houses on Sullagil Street between Yulgokno and Jongmyo were dismantled and a small park was installed in its place. Unfortunately, the original features from the Joseon era disappeared after Sulla-gil was reorganized and the park was built. When a wide, clean street was installed, the original features of Sulla-gil disappeared, and when the last short stretch of Sulla-gil at the entrance to the alley of Yulgono side in 2005 was replaced by a park, the Sulla-gil disappeared forever. The yellow sodium street lights in the evenings, the late afternoon sunlight beaming into the alley over the Jongmyo wall, laundry hanging over the street, and women visiting their neighbor’s houses now these scenes can be found only in the few remaining pictures of the old alley. B2b-21



Inside of Gwonnong-dong Alley Gwonnong-dong, Waryong-dong and Bongik-dong are long, narrow strips of towns located between Sulla-gil and Donhwamunno Street. If you squeezed yourself into the narrow alley, which is so narrow that the space between the eaves of the two houses facing each other is narrower than the width of your shoulders, you will encounter familiar features of the old alley in harmony with old traditional houses. This is quite different from the modernized new Sullagil. B2b-21



Seonggwak-gil of Jangchung-dong The circumference of the old citadel wall of Seoul is more than 18km in length. Because it was built along the ridge of 4 inner mountains, many parts of the wall lie on the mountains. The relatively flat sections stretch from Dongdaemun to the west of Jangchung Gymnasium through Gwanghimun Gate, from Namdaemun Gate to Seodaemun Gate, and Hyehwamun Gate to Seongbuk-dong. There is no wall remaining from Namdaemun Gate to Seodaemun Gate except for the restored walls in the Korean Chamber of Commerce and Industry near Namdaemun Gate. On the other hand, however, the walls are still visible in the western side of the city. Between Gwanghimun Gate and Jangchung-dong, and between Hyewhamun Gate to Seongbuk-dong, the wall shows itself on and off as it runs through a residential area, sometimes as a retaining wall, other times as a wall for a school. Remnants of the wall also appear along the boundaries of Sindang-dong and Jangchung-dong 1-ga. Another interesting fragment left by the history of Seoul is the citadel-wall-lane that was made with the intention to connect the inside and the outside of the wall. Eventually, the citadel wall lost its function and meaning as a boundary to divide the city from the outside; it remained only as a geographical boundary. B2b-40




Yonggang-dong History and old streets are not the only things found within the four gates. There were also villages outside the city walls even in the early Joseon Dynasty, including: Banseokbang, Bansongbang at the outside of Seodaemum Gate, and Sungsinbang and Sunginbang outside of Dongdaemun Gate. Toward the late Joseon Dynasty era, the population outside the wall was almost equal to the population inside. All of the Gangbuk area of today belonged to Hanseongbu City. Ferries brought goods to Seoul from all over the country and these were distributed all over Joseon. Mapo and Yongsan were the largest ferry hubs among the ferry points on the Hangang River such as Seogang, Dumopo, Ddukseom and others. With a population of 15,000 for each city in 1789, these cities were slightly larger than Daegu and slightly smaller than Jeonju. Mapo and Yongsan were as big as other large local cities in the country. Tracks of old roads and villages are spread out in the vicinity of the Mapo ferry point where the Mapo Bridge was constructed, a reservoir was laid, and parking lots were installed. The old village of Mapo consisted of Yongangdong, Daeheung-dong, and Mapo-dong and was called Dongmak because of the many kilns for firing earthenware. Although the area is gradually losing its old features due to large apartment complexes and other modern developments, the old streets as well as many traditional houses still survive inside the village. However, even the few tracks of the Mapo ferry point that remain are destined to disappear in the wake of development. A2-18




Wangsimni Wangsimni is located in eastern Seoul on the corner of an old artery road that stretches from Dongdaemun Gate and Gwanghimun Gate, to Gwangnaru and Ddukseom across Salgot Bridge, and to Songpa ferry point. The naturally winding roads of the Joseon era have changed into straight and wide Sinjakno, or newly made road, with the passage of time. An old Joseon road can be found one block north of Wangsimni-gil which lies between the Sindang Station and the Sangwangsimni Station of the number 2 line subway. Since the straight new road bypassed the winding curvature of the old road, the stretch of 1.5km of old road miraculously survived. The rows of old worn-out traditional Korean houses still stand along the street but are no longer homes because they are occupied by metal shops. However, the owners of the shops, in their oily clothes, standing beside the loud machines, proudly claim that Kim Du-han used to visit the house when it was a bar. Or, the old man who lives in a traditional Korean house next door squeezed between the metal shops, claims that King Danjong passed by this street on his way to exile. Although this area was outside of the wall at the fringes of the city, and is now home to iron factories, the people are still proud of the dignity of their village due to the depth of history that goes back to the early Joseon Dynasty. C2-4


Sajik-dong Seoul is rightfully proud of its 600-year history. But what if there were only new roads and new villages in the city - What if the history and culture we are so proud of disappeared in the reality of the city and could only be found in museums or books Unfortunately, this frightening supposition is slowly turning into a reality. Sajikdan, is the place where kings of the Joseon Dynasty performed ritual ceremonies to the gods of land and grain. The villages of Sajik-dong and Naesudong in front of the Sajikdan have a long history dating back to the beginning of the Joseon Dynasty. The remains of the old streets and villages can be found neither on the ground, nor underground. The legacy of the past remains only in the names of the high mixed use buildings. The real body of history was erased and only the images of the past are exploited as a marketing tool to upgrade and dignify the apartment buildings. A large scale apartment named “Morning of Gyeonghuigung-Palace” and “Yongbieocheonga” stand in an area once filled with traditional Korean houses. Ironically, a large housingcommercial complex named Bon, which literally means “root,” is under construction while the last remaining roots of old Sajik-dong are being destroyed. The sadness and frustration for the history and culture that has been lost, underscores the need to show more love and respect for the old roads and buildings. The old structures serve as evidence that Seoul is indeed a historical city more than 600 years old. It is imperative that Seoul becomes a city that respects and maintains its dignity, history and culture. B2-19


Another Roads, Railroads Changmo Ahn

The railroad has been with us all these years, implying different things. The railroad, which was an engine for industrialization for others, was a tool for invasion by imperialist forces that left a deep scar on our collective mindset. The locomotive abandoned in the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) is the symbol of the painful division of Korea into South and North; at the same time, it represents the powerful engine that has led to economic prosperity. The railroad sometimes carried an alien influence, and other times carried immigrants from the countryside to Seoul. The railroad that once lost much of its significance to automobiles and the subway, is expecting a renaissance with the opening of the KTX, a high-speed railroad system. Connection of the Gyeongui Railroad Line, which draws much attention as the relationship between the two Koreas improves, is one step away from a political reality. Once it is re-connected, the Seoul Railroad Station is expected to be the gate to Seoul and Euro-Asia. Railroads have been a significant factor in the growth of the city. A railroad is a road, but one that we can walk on, which is probably the source of the Korean nursery rhyme ‘A small hut by the railroad.” As the “walkable city movement” receives more support from the general public, crosswalks have appeared on once vehicle-dominated streets. Now it is possible to cross the 100-meter-wide Sejongno road on foot. The railroad appeared last into the city, but disappeared first. Because it came to the scene last, railroads became the boundary of the city in some places, and in others, divided the city in two. Some time ago, the railroads began to change again. Some tracks were upgraded to support faster trains while others lost their function as a railroad. These deserted lines in Seoul, once the engine for modernization, are now becoming locations for new urban spaces.



The Railroad: A Road Made of Iron One day in 1900, the train departed Inchoen, crossed the Hangang River and arrived at the terminal in Seoul, seen in the picture above. The termination of the Gyeongin Line was not the current location of the Seoul Railroad Station but Seodaemun Station just outside of Seodaemun. Now the tracks of the old Seodaemun Station are only visible in official residences, a few warehouses and restaurants. The growth axis of Seoul shifted significantly with the opening of the Gyeongin Line. Because the relationship with China was highly valued, Seodaemun had been the most important place as it was the primary gateway for the trade route to China. After the opening of the Gyeongin Line and the establishment of trade with other foreign countries, particularly those in the West, Namdaemun took over as the premier portal to Seoul due to its location. Ultimately, Namdaemun overtook Seodaemun in terms of political and economic significance. B2a-14



The Gateway to Seoul vs. the Gateway to the Continent. The railways began to re-emerge after a long period of subordinate status to automobiles. When the railway project to and from Incheon International Airport is finished in 2009, Seoul will become a global gateway. Seoul Station will take on even more responsibility when the Gyeongui Line opens to support the Gaeseong Industrial Park. It is also possible that Seoul Station will become the starting point for the trans-continental railroad project. Since the redevelopment around the railroad station, with the super high-rise mixed-use buildings of more powerful images than the ones in the past, started 10-20 years after that of downtown area, this effort became the template for other projects. B2a-1


View from the Roadside of the Gyeongwon Line The Gyeongwon Line, completed in 1914, was built from Yongsan Station to Wonsan. The Gyeongwon Line added an additional layer to the riverbanks of the Hangang, which has long been the boundary of Seoul. Now, a high-rise apartment replaces the hut in the popular Korean nursery rhyme. B2c-6



The container of Seoul’s future In 1914, the first train to Wonsan passed along the railroad that drew a big arc along the Hangang River. This arc, now home to a fan-shaped complex of apartments that blocks the view to the Hangang River, was the new boundary of Seoul after the expansion of its jurisdiction. Yongsan, the first new modern city within Seoul, became a logistical node when the Gyeongin Line opened in 1900. By 1908, Yongsan had become a hub for railroad transportation and home to Japanese garrisons. At one time, the garrisons and the railroad that divided Yongsan into two were symbols of development, but now, they present an obstacle to development in this area. Now, with the anticipated departure of the U.S. Army base, Yongsan is highlighted as a new area for redevelopment. Yeouido, the Manhattan of Seoul, is visible over the apartment complexes along the Hangang. The “Comprehensive Hangang Development Plan,” which took place in conjunction with the Yeouido development, recreated and streamlined the Hangang area. As a result of the development projects, many islands disappeared and the basin of the Hangang was reformed. B2c-6



1914: The Boundary of Seoul and the Escape of the Boundary In 1914, Seoul was expanded to the Hangang for the first time in history. The railroad on the border was a means of demarcation, and at the same time, a means of crossing the barrier. With the help of the railroad, Seoul was able to overcome the geographical restraints of the Hangang for the first time. There are many different types of railway systems operating in contemporary Seoul, including the Gyoengbu Line, the Gyeongin Line, the subway, and highspeed trains. Each serves different customers and runs on their own customized tracks. B2c-6


The Platform of Ichon Station and the National Railway The vicinity of railroads once symbolized the decline of an area, so much so that the title of a popular Korean nursery rhyme could be changed from “A cabin by the railroad” to “An apartment by the railroad.” Apartment buildings even stand next to railroad lines. In Seoul, some apartment buildings on the river serve as indicators of the city’s boundary, while others reflect the stagnation of the region. B2c-7


Temporary Railroad Stations of Seoul There are several places that do not fit into modern Seoul at all. Seobinggo Station was once busy when the Gyeongwon Line and its branch line to the Japanese Garrison were opened. Now, the deserted railways, a temporary station building, and a wooden parcel office are all that’s left of the Seobinggo Station. B2d-7



A Railroad through the Mountains A railroad is so straightforward that it overcomes almost all obstacles in its path in a linear fashion. When a river gets in its way, a bridge is built. When a mountain gets in its way, a tunnel is dug. The railroad and its passage through the middle of Bugahyeon-dong reflect the compacted history of urban growth in Korea. A tunnel was dug to go through the mountain in Bugahyeon-dong when the Gyeongui Line was built to support the Russo-Japanese Wars. Later, during the economic development period after the liberation, the hills of Bugahyeon-dong were covered with the settlement of immigrants fleeing from North Korea. Soon after, churches and schools were erected on every hillside. B2a-15


B2a-14, B2c-6

The Railroad in Our Daily Lives-1 Although a train is too cumbersome to use on a daily basis, the memories of the railroad have stayed with us for a long time. “Tokkigul,” or an underpass dug through an earth - berm to elevate the railroad, often become the subjects of people’s childhood memories. In the meantime, retaining walls, constructed at the intersection of railroads and major traffic arteries, have become ideal canvases for the inspirational urban murals that add vitality to our dry daily lives. B2a-14



The Railroad in Our Daily Lives-2 Railroads in the city stand as they always have but have disappeared from the cognitive maps of many people. The infrequent encounters with railroads at street crossings give us something to reflect on as we wait for the green light. One of the reasons behind the railroad’s disappearance from view is soundproof walls, designed to increase the quality of life for the people living around railroad. The existence of such soundproof walls is a symbol of the railroad’s lost prestige as the locomotive of industrial growth. B2c-6



New Railroad Stations and the Fate of Railroad Until the 1980’s, suburban resorts were the only available options for Seoul residents during the spring and summer vacations. People departed for suburban areas from Sinchon Station. At that time, trains were the “feet” of the people who sought to spend their vacations outside the city. College students were a big part of this vacation phenomenon because of their vacation culture, called Membership Training (MT). Sinchon Station was the No. 1 place to begin MT and it was customary to see college students with guitars at Sinchon Station. It is one of the places where fond memories of the past still linger. The office buildings of Sinchon Station were scheduled for demolition as part of a new station construction plan. It was saved by the efforts of many citizens whose memories are linked to the station. Now it is a registered historic building. Although there is a new Sinchon Station office building behind the old structure, Sinchon Station presents the people with the opportunity to look back into the past. It has been said that: “historic assets are the bridges between different generations.” It has also been said that: “buildings are preserved for their values and memories of the older generation.” When these cultural assets are used by the younger generation, the memories and the meanings embedded in them deliver something that cannot be verbally conveyed to these new users. In that regard, a city with as rich a history and architecture as Seoul is no exception. B2a-12


Vanishing Railroads: Site of Deserted Lines Railroads are clearly in decline after exerting a century of influence on the urban fabric since its introduction 100 years ago. Trains loaded with coal would leave Yongsan instead of Gyeongui Line, and ran on a branch line to supply the Dangin-ri power plant. Coal then passed Seogang Station and Hongik University. This branch line to Dangin-ri faded away when the fuel requirements for the power plant changed, creating a change in the urban structure. Deserted lines were out of place in the existing urban context. Some deserted lines became attractive commercial complexes, while others were turned into walkable city areas. A2-2



Vanishing Railroads, Emerging Railroads and the City In most cases, it is the branch line, not the main line, which vanishes. But sometimes, entire lines are deserted when uses are changed. The long-awaited railway project from Incheon International Airport to downtown is on the horizon, and it aims to construct an underground line from Susaek to Seoul Station. The existing ground-level lines will be transformed into open spaces and parks. It can be said that the railroads of the past divided the city, often violently, in spite of their utility. Today, deserted railroads are being reborn into areas designed to unify the divided city. On the other hand, some railroads are being continuously integrated into the complicated and advanced city - subways. Subways are roads made of iron just like regular railroads. However, the subway’s function is far different from that of a regular railroad. First, subways only transport people and do not function as a means of transportation for industries. Second, whether above or below ground, subways are constructed only in pre-existing urban cores of cities. The subway is changing the way the city is recognized. Upon entering the underground subway station, the traveler is immediately cut off from the city. The traveler is then transported to their destination, entirely below the surface of the city. The traveler’s connection with the city is turned on when they get off the subway and exit the underground subway station. The analogue-type city experience of buses and trains are being replaced with the digital-type city experience from subways, which consists only of “1” and “0”- “on” and “off.” A2-19


History Culture Environment: Palace, Walls, and Bukchon Doojin Hwang


The significance of Seoul as a historical city is not the same as Vienna or Florence. In spite of its long history, Seoul has not retained many remnants of its past and the remnants that are left are scattered all over the city. This makes Seoul look more like a dynamic young city than a mature one. Perhaps this is what makes Seoul so attractive. Seoul can be a model city where new things are adapted from old things. . From this perspective, the uniqueness of Seoul is not in the length of its history, but in how the history relates to the modern city. There are a few old cities like Seoul that have grown into a megalopolis, and conversely, there are few megalopolises with as rich a history as Seoul. This is where Seoul differentiates itself from other cities. The width and depth of the history of Seoul is incomparable to other cities. Thus, the history of Seoul has to be understood from the perspective of the present and future of Seoul. This differentiates Seoul from other historical cities in Europe, where yesterday's history is preserved at the expense of today's dynamics. Another important factor in understanding the history of Seoul is its natural environment. Seoul is a laboratory where a meaningful integration of nature and humanity is applied and realized on a large scale. Many of the historical assets of Seoul are inseparable from their natural settings and geographic location. Gyeongbok Palace and Changdeok Palace, the two main palaces in Seoul, are vivid examples of this relationship. Both palaces share the Bohyeonbong Peak of Bukhansan Mountain as their background. Although the physical size of these two palaces is not huge, they encompass a large territory when considering their relationship to nature. The axis from Bohyeonbong in the north to Gwanaksan Mountain with Gyeongbok Palace at the center is roughly 20km.

The relationship between history, culture, and the city are well expressed not only in palaces, but also in the Bukchon Village and the citadel walls. Bukchon is located at the place where the man-made environment meets nature. Bukchon’s gentle southward slope is home to residential developments with beautiful views of the palace and mountains. At the same time, Bukchon is only 10 minutes away by car from Seoul City Hall, the symbolic center of Seoul. From the top of Bukchon, downtown Seoul appears to be just an arm’s length away. Bukchon, where history and nature are mingled together, is still part of a dynamic metropolitan city. This is the real value of Bukchon. The citadel wall of Seoul is an interesting example where history is coupled with nature from the beginning, because it was constructed along the natural topography. Since the wall was built along the natural contours, it still functions as a boundary between towns and districts. Further, in the high-security military zones of Inwangsan and Bukaksan, the wall still seems to be just as reliable a military facility as it was in the past. The sight of the ancient wall zigzagging across the mountainside like dragon scales is one of the unique experiences that Seoul can provide. Vistas from overlapping man-made and natural fortifications, and the daily activities of city life within these fortifications make Seoul an inimitable place. From the perspective of history, Seoul is in a very interesting phase. It seems that Seoul is at the critical point where it must identify its urban character. Rapid vertical expansion and the construction of high-rise apartments are backed by a rapid networking of historical assets, which is in turn supported by nature. It is critical that Seoul reshapes itself with an eye towards continued growth as a modern city, yet tempered with sensitivity to its historic heritage.



Mt. Baekaksan or Bukaksan - the mountain to the rear of Gyoengbok Palace, is considered the “guardian mountain” of Seoul. However, the central axis of Gyeongbok Palace is clearly not directed toward Baekaksan, but toward the Bohyeonbong Peak of Mt. Bukhansan, the background of Changdeok Palace. This is the way in which nature is interwoven through the scenery of the city. Understanding the links between urban features is one of the key factors in understanding Seoul. B2a-29


Sejongno in front of Gwanghwamun Gate is one of the most important streets in Seoul. A monument for the 40th anniversary of King Gojong’s enthronement stands at the intersection of Sejongno and Jongno. Sculptures of this monument are as important to the street as the pedestrians. A closer look reveals that the sculptures have expressions and postures which are even more varied than people. B2b-30



Tongui-dong was a middle-class residential area in the Joseon dynasty. The area was left out of development patterns for a while but that has recently changed. These days, you can see archaeological excavations in this area before new construction begins, because this is a historical area where King Yeongjo of the Joseon dynasty was born. History sometimes appears unexpectedly in ordinary life like this. B2b-27



In a sense, Gyeongbok Palace is now being built for the third time in history. The original Gyeongbok Palace was destroyed when Japan invaded Joseon in 16th century. Later, it was rebuilt by Daewongun, Emperor Gojong’s father, and once again damaged by the Japanese government during the Japanese occupation. Now this grandiose palace is being restored to its old shape. The layers of rooflines of many buildings look like waves around the reconstructed Taewonjun Pavillion area at the northwest corner of the palace. B2b-27


Yeongchumun, the western gate of Gyeongbok Palace is mentioned in the very first paragraph of Gwandongbyeolgok, a famous poem of Songgang Jeong Cheol’s in the16th century. Hyojaro Street, in front of Yeongchumun, fell victim to political propaganda because it led to the powerhouse Cheongwadae, or the presidential residence. Now, the vicinity of Cheongwadae including Hyojaro is open to the public, and is crowded with pedestrians on clear, mild days. B2b-27



It is clear that mountains are the backgrounds for all of the palaces in Seoul. Gyeongbok Palace has Mt. Baekaksan and Bohyeonbong Peak as its backdrop; and in this photo, Changdeok Palace has Eungbong and Bohyeonbong peaks as its backdrop. Even Gyeonghi Palace, of which only a portion remains, stands before Mt. Inwangsan. It’s not easy to find such hidden jewels of scenery near the end of this narrow alley from Jongno, because of the smog in Seoul and the complexity of the streets. B2b-13


The area around Yeongchumun Gate is so close to the downtown area that the central government complex is literally within arm’s reach. However, the area still enjoys a long history. The rare mixture of historical assets and modern city life in this area is something that few cities other than Seoul can claim. B2b-27



Numerous buildings and pavilions in Changdeok Palace were already demolished, even though the palace was not damaged as severely as the others. Many of those demolished buildings have been restored recently and are quite a view in the middle of Seoul. The group dancing by these royal buildings is easily visible when walking from the Jae-dong Elementary School intersection to Wonseo-dong. Their beauty is a manifestation of the collective Korean architecture. B2b-14



For many years the palaces were devoid of life and activity. Now, discussions about the potential reuse of these spaces are underway thanks to the recent shift of perspectives on historical assets from absolute conservation to appropriate use. Deoksu Palace’s Royal Guard Changing Ceremony has already settled in as a part of Seoul’s daily city life. B2b-34



The fact that the most sacred royal shrine, Jongmyo, is located in the busy commercial district of Jongno has held special meaning since the construction of the shrine. Is this stark contrast between the sacred and the secular intentional? It seems as though a curious modern city peeks into the silent yard of Jongmyo. B2b-19



The natural balance between the precious antique and ordinary daily life - this may be the source of Seoul’s beauty. The area around the Jongmyo Royal Shrine wall has been renovated and Sulla-gil was restored, but this old community is still a collection of individual fragments. B2b-21



These two photos are proof of the tremendous changes experienced by the city and its housing. One picture was taken in 1983, and the other was taken at the same spot in 2005. The area is still referred to as “Bomundong traditional Korean village� but the buildings no longer match the name. C1-5



It is hard to see that this picture depicts a “traditional Korean village.” History rich Bukchon also suffered through hard times. A view from the Hyundai headquarters shows how difficult it is for a modern city to preserve its layers of history. Historic Jungang High School stands where Bukchon meets nature. B2b-15


Bukchon’s well-preserved origins are shown only in very few pictures like this-a photo which covers other landscape features. The western-style house in the middle of this picture may not seem relevant to Bukchon, but in fact, is a protected cultural asset. B2b-18



One can feel the “analogue Seoul� from a carefullyrestored wall of a Korean traditional house built by hand. Bukchon was created by human beings, not by machines, so delicate imperfections add precious value and character to buildings. B2b-18


Gahoe-dong may be the best alley in terms of the preservation of Korean traditional houses. None of the 19 traditional homes in this alley were renovated to multi-family housing. Considering the history of the urban area, this is a miracle. It is not an accident that this alley is one of the most popular places for people and film-making. B2b-18



Bukchon’s value comes from the fact that it is part of a living city. A look from the top of alley of 31, Gahoedong commands a view of Mt. Namsan and the city before it. In a sense, this contrast is very Seoul-like. The future of Seoul as a historic city is very different from that of Vienna or Paris, where the historical context acts as restraints on the city. Sometimes, the coexistence between the new and the old is more attractive. B2b-18



A city in the front, a mountain in the back. Bukchon sits where the city of Seoul interfaces with nature. Visible is the contrast between the granite of Mt. Baekaksan and the gentle rooflines of Bukchon. B2b-18



The city sits atop the rooflines. Bukchon is located on the hillside below Eungbong Peak and Mt. Baekaksan. This is why a view from any of the surrounding hills creates an overlapping scene of different urban components. A tile was purposely left on the roof by the humorous roof-tile installer. B2b-18


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While this alley in Bukchon is not filled with Korean traditional houses, it answers the question: “What should a neighborhood be like?� A simple action to place flower vases on the street is not as simple as it looks. It requires a big change in our thoughts on private and public. B2b-18


The area west of Gyeongbok Palace is full of Korean traditional houses, even though it is not technically included in Bukchon. The centuries-old network of alleys, which has been maintained with little change for several hundreds of years, is often compared to the developer-planned streets of Bukchon. Imagine how many people have passed through this narrow alley over the centuries. The weight of those footsteps is heavy in these streets. B2b-18


The historic Jungang High School is located at the highest point of Bukchon. Jungang High could become a popular high school if the distorted education system of today were repaired. This may be possible since Seoul has begun to realize the true value and significance of history. B2b-17


If Bukchon is defined by its traditional Korean houses only, it begs the question, “What kinds of houses would they be?” The western-style houses like this “Missionary Home” and the former Italian Embassy and Seoul Art Gallery, designed by architect Kim Jung-eop, are inseparable parts of Bukchon, too. As stated above, Bukchon embraces the various changes of history and culture of Seoul. B2b-18



It is hard to say when the changing of the guards ceremonies began, but they are now common in Seoul including the one held everyday in front of Namdaemun. There are some who complain that these ceremonies make the city look like an amusement park, but they are in the minority. The ceremonies became even more popular after the vicinity of Namdaemun was developed as a park. Whatever its potential value may be, it is hard to deny that these ceremonies are possible only in historic cities like Seoul. B2a-2


Namdaemun may not be the place where the walls of Seoul began, but no one can deny that it is still the symbolic gateway to Seoul. It has an unmistakable presence even though it has been surrounded by other buildings. B2a-2



The walls of Seoul used to turn around at the upper end of this beautiful amphitheater of Ehwa Girls’ High School. Ehwa Girls’ High School was located within the walls but expanded beyond the walls as the school grew. It presents an interesting but somewhat disorganized contrast of the classical amphitheater and the city. B2a-18


Some of the walls of Seoul have been beautifully restored, while others have not. The portion in the photo still remains in a confusing state; it is not fully restored, but it has not been left as it was, either. B2a-21


Hongpa-dong in Seodaemun-gu, where the walls of Seoul begin. Its ascent of Mt. Inwangsan is already filled with numerous buildings. A multifamily housing, like this one, has a huge stone wall in its backyard. The stone wall is assumed to be a part of Seoul walls. In this way, we encounter Seoul’s history in unexpected ways. Development should show more sensitivity to history than is displayed here. B2a-21


The walls of Seoul were rebuilt a number of times. Originally, King Taejo constructed the walls when the Joseon dynasty was established, and later, King Sejong reinforced the walls. Then the walls were repaired by King Sukjong following the Japanese invasion in the 16th century. Perhaps, it is time for yet another restoration. A view from Mt. Inwangsan gives us many opportunities to observe the history of Seoul’s walls. The plants growing out of the stones detract from the strength of the stone walls. B1-3

For the past few decades, this view was not available to the public. A view from Chotdaebawi rock past Sukjeongmun in Mt. Baekaksan is something new for most people who are only familiar with the view from Mt. Namsan. Normally, the smog in Seoul’s air impedes the clear view of Seoul but on a clear day, one can see the Hangang River over the old city and Mt. Gwanaksan beyond Hangang River. In the past, this was a view of Seoul only the president enjoyed. Now, the public can stand where only a handful of people were once allowed.



Sukjeongmun, the north gate of Seoul, was finally opened to the public in 2005. Although its status as a military security area results in a great deal of restrictions, it is very positive for such an area to be opened to the public. A group of people listen to a tour guide talk about Sukjeongmun. B1-4


For some reason, Seoul is more inspirational when viewed from the north. This is because one can see that Seoul has a surprisingly vast area of green spaces. Looking at the walls before arriving at Hyehwa-dong from Mt. Baekaksan makes us feel like we are sitting on the back of a large dragon. The thick forests in this picture are Changdeok Palace and its rear garden. Seoul’s air always remains a little smoggy, even on a clear day. Perhaps it makes us feel the existence of the mountains more vividly. B2b-8



Some portions of the wall of Seoul are closely linked to our daily lives. This part of the wall, from Samseongyo Bridge to Mt. Naksan is very steep, but its steepness makes the walls seem stronger. On one side of the wall is Seongbuk-gu while Jongno-gu lies on the other side. The walls of Seoul still serve as a border between towns and districts. B2b-5


Dongdaemun Gate is located where the lower slopes of Mt. Naksan meet the plain. Dongdaemun may be the lowest point of Seoul’s old city with waters from the mountains flowing out of Seoul through the Cheonggyechon stream, which abuts Dongdaemun. The presence of this low ground is the reason it was used by invaders to enter Seoul. The same Dongdaemun has been turned into the most fashionable district in Seoul. The walls of Seoul run toward Dongdaemun after looping around Ewha Woman’s University Hospital at Dongdaemun. B2b-7



There is a symbiotic relationship between nature and the history of Seoul. The walls of Seoul offer man-made protection while the surrounding mountains provide natural protection. Mt. Naksan is not a high mountain, but it provides a full view of the old city of Seoul. When it comes to understanding and observing Seoul, no view can compete with the view from Mt. Naksan. B1-11

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In some ways, the walls of Seoul are the most familiar historical assets to the citizens of Seoul. This 18km long linear structure fully encompasses the old urban core in Gangbuk. That is why the walls are so easily converted into parks for the nearby residential units - as shown in this picture. It truly is a historical asset that can be used in daily life. B2b-40


Scribbles remain on the surface of Seoul’s walls along the hiking trails of Mt. Namsan. Each portion of the wall, starting from the top of Mt. Baekaksan, was built by conscripts from different regions. The portion in this photo was built by people from Gyeongsang-do. The fact that the construction record was inscribed in the stone sends a silent warning to those who build and destroy the city without thought. B2b-40


From a path going back to Namdaemun, past the top of Mt. Namsan, the view enjoyed by these three people roughly corresponds to the area which is surrounded by the walls of Seoul. Standing on this spot, it is possible to reach a new understanding about the construction of Seoul. Not many places allow the full appreciation of the characteristics of Seoul as a mixture of nature, man, machines and art. B2b-41


The City and Architecture of Seoul as the Container of Life





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Kyung Rip Park

Architecture is often referred to as a container for life, and the city a home for architecture. While a city necessarily consists of architecture, the architecture itself is meaningless without the context of the life it holds. Naturally, cities and the architecture it encapsulates exist for the benefit of its citizens. Unfortunately, architecture, cities and life do not always exist in harmony. Sometimes, a city will lose the link to its history by “running alone” while other times, a city will use architecture to create new experiences for its citizens. Sometimes architecture with a strong character can create confusion, and the coercive force of a city disrupts its creativity and uniqueness. Seoul is as diverse, complex, and dynamic as any other city in the world. Befitting a city of its size and density, Seoul boasts a variety of features which support a diversity of lifestyles. Seoul has all the historical features one would expect from a city with thousands of years of history, and at the same time, has the international features that have been shaped by rapid cultural development and physical growth over the last century. The population of Seoul increased rapidly due to the influx of people from all over Korea. This increase in population has forced Seoul to grow beyond its existing structure and expand into new areas. For example, immigrants from rural areas settled down in the once uninhabited peripheral area of the old citadel wall of Hanyang. On the hills and mountains that make up the natural boundary of the city, squatters settled down and created a “moon village.” Later, with economic development, those residential areas were redeveloped in the name of ‘residential environment improvement.’ It began with infrastructure development, including establishing a city water supply, installation of a drainage system, and the opening of access roads for fire trucks. It was after the 1990’s, however, that actual redevelopment started with the construction of community apartments. The high-rise apartments built onto the surrounding mountainsides shadowed the mountains that once were the background for the residential area. As a result, the skyline of Seoul has been altered and the view corridors that connected the city to the mountains were lost. In an effort to manage the population density and the volatile housing situation, the Korean government initiated the development of new towns outside Seoul and Gangbuk and other areas outside the Four Gates. However, Seoul, even with its growing pains, continues to make compromises as it develops into a contaner that combines history and the future, in the new millennium. Transparency, minimalism, environmental accountability, sustainability, ecology protection and cultural variety are the hot topics of the 21st century. The external expressions referring to architecture have not changed as we move from the industrial age to the information age. However, the changes in the paradigm of looking at architecture and the city can be found in many places. One of the biggest issues today is respect for human and public value. Vehicle-oriented roads have changed to pedestrian-oriented roads, opening up communication for both sides of the once disconnected road. The reorganization of roads for buses, a big change for Seoul, is the result of a policy shift that prioritizes the public value.


Furthermore, more spaces are being allocated for public use, and private facilities have started to yield their area on the street to the public. The traffic square is also being designated as a pedestrian road, which has increased the human space. Spaces for Birth, Death, and Religious Facilities Birth and death is the beginning and ending of all life, and as such, play important roles in life. For this reason, the place of birth and death is always remembered. In fact, tombs and the manner in which the deceased are entombed are keys to characterizing a culture. Seoul is no exception. Seoul is filled with spaces for dealing with birth and death. However, the modern age has brought about profound changes in Seoul. Giving birth at home with the help of a midwife, once a typical way of giving birth, has been replaced by hospitals and ob-gyns. The customs surrounding death have also changed. The tradition of moving patients from the hospital to their home just before death has disappeared, and the funeral hall affiliated with the hospital has changed the funerary process. Now, the Geumjul, or a taboo string which announced a birth, and the lanterns which were hung to announce a death, are rarely found in the residential areas of Seoul. Funeral ceremonies and the tombs which once enjoyed a good location at the outskirts of Seoul have undergone rapid changes. These days, no more land space is available for burial in Seoul. Only the national military cemeteries and Mangwu-ri public cemetery remain; but even there, many tombs were relocated during the development of Seoul. Ironically, the Mangwu-ri public cemetery was designated as a cultural asset in an effort to preserve the traditional cemetery. At the same time, the shift from burying to cremating created crematoriums and columbariums, another unique feature of Seoul. On the other hand, religious facilities became a precious resting area for life. Protestant churches, catholic churches, and Buddhist temples in the city are always expanding, holding an important place in the center of our lives and providing the space that is needed by society. Growth and Education Seoul is also the most popular place for education in Korea. As the proverb says “when a baby is born, the baby better be sent to Seoul.” Growing up and being educated in Seoul has always had special meaning in Korea. For this reason, people from distant provinces have always tried to move to Seoul. Some of them stayed as a guest at an upper class house, or brought their entire family and stayed until they found a permanent residence. Many students from the countryside lived with their relatives in Seoul or in lodging houses. The wealthy often bought a house or an apartment so their children could study in Seoul. The large numbers of students in Seoul resulted in a young population. As public education developed and tutoring became popular for college entrance exams, the children’s development moved from the neighborhoods, mountains and fields around Seoul to the playgrounds of schools, apartments, malls and other indoor areas. Moreover, Taegweondo, or computer institutions, have replaced the daycare, once an

important space for the growth and socialization of the children of Seoul. Preschool, kindergarten, elementary school, middle school, high school and college are not only places of education, but they are also important places for growth, energy and power. For good or bad, private schools have become important factors in determining the location of residential areas in Seoul. The private institutions in Jongno, Gwanghwamun and Daechi-dong, spurred by the development of Gangnam and Junggey-dong, have changed the structure and landscape of the city. Dwelling Seoul’s rapid development has brought with it unavoidable changes. Apartment complexes have become the center of Seoul’s development efforts and have altered the city’s landscape. At the same time, a bias towards the nuclear family has created ongoing residential problems, as well as a change in family relationships, which in turn has become a social problem. The emergence of the multi-family house and apartment units in private houses became the alternate solution for the residential housing demand. Unfortunately, this has resulted in increased noise, loss of neighborhood cohesion, and parking wars. The loss of traditional Korean houses has inspired architects to resurrect traditional Korean architecture. The traditional Korean houses of Bukchon are examples of classic Korean architecture and will serve to maintain the heritage and values of Seoul. Work The foundation of a city lies in its place of work. Seoul has been known as the center of business and commerce for hundreds of years. Seoul’s early morning starts with the global business facilities. Focused in Myeong-dong, these department stores, banks and offices are the symbolic center of Seoul’s work place. Recently, much effort has been devoted to returning the trading area that was lost to other areas. Yeouido, which developed rapidly at the end of the 20th century, is another center of work for Seoul. Not only is Yeouido the center for stock markets and financial offices, it contributed to the change of Seoul’s skyline. Teheranro, which appeared along with the development of Gangnam, also had an impact on the landscape of the city. At the same time, there are many places famous for specific industries such as Noryangjin fish market, Dongdaemun fashion towns, Euljiro printing alleys and Cheonggyecheon tool sellers. Ultimately, Seoul is being developed not only as the center of commerce in Korea, but also a center for international business.

have also become popular with young people, and the combination of unique cultures has created a new city landscape. Shopping areas including Doota in Dongdaemun have gained international exposure and led to the merchant’s room culture. The Yeongdeungpo area is another location with a multi-nuclear structure of entertainment. The “bang” or room culture that began with Karaoke has led to the emergence of Jjimjil-bangs, Goshi-bangs, PC-bangs, Telephone-bangs, and Laundry-bangs. Not only have these entertainment spaces become the center of our lives, but it has also become a part of the cultural landscape in the new age. Recreational Areas and Cultural Space in the Civic Center Gwangnaru, Hanggang White Beach, Taereung Pear Orchard, Ttukseom, Bongeun-sa Temple and Donggureung are all well-known recreational spaces near Seoul. Five palaces including Changgyeong Palace act as picnic spaces for the citizens of Seoul. Due to a lack of open spaces in the civic center, many historical assets are used as recreational spaces. Squares in the western sense appeared at the end of the 20th century. 5.16 Square was used for political purposes while the other squares were primarily used as traffic squares. A cultural mindset, which developed along with Seoul’s economical growth, required a citizen’s square, neighborhood park and pocket gardens near residential areas. Accordingly, many other small parks were created. Pagoda Park, Jangchungdan Park and Namsan Park have become favorite places for middle and older generations. The temporary plan for a pedestrian-only street in Insan-dong, Myeong-dong and Daehangno enlightened the public of the importance of open spaces in the civic center. This created the unique street landscape seen during the World Cup where roads were blocked and expanded to allow people to watch and cheer the World Cup together. As squares for citizens in Seoul are expanded step by step, they become natural resting and recreational spaces. In addition, there are many cultural facilities opening in Seoul in an effort to maintain its position as the cultural center of Korea. The National Museum of Korea and many other galleries have opened. Excellent art centers, libraries and gyms are being built in Gu or district units. All these spaces and programs serve to increase the public’s access to the cultural heritage of Korea.

New Consumption Spaces Entertainment helps cities breathe, and gives energy and life to cities. After a day of work or school, different groups of people enjoy different forms of entertainment. Downtowns which started with Myeong-dong are becoming multi-nuclear structures much like Seoul. KOEX Mall and Gangnam Station area have become meeting places for young people and popular entertainment spaces. The Sinchon and Hongdae areas


Space of Birth, Death and Religion Kyung Koo Han / Kyung Rip Park



As in any large city, Seoul sees its share of birth and death. Strangely, in the eyes of many Koreans, Seoul is considered a place to live and work, but rarely as a place to be born or die. Many people born outside the city relocate to Seoul for their education, to find a job, or to find better opportunities. However, most people who live in Seoul do not expect to live out their lives in Seoul. Most think about going back to their hometowns in their old age, or moving to another area after retirement. Even if they were to die in Seoul, they hope to be buried in their family graveyard in their hometown. Not all of the people who live in Seoul are true Seoulites. For true Seoulites, Seoul is the place for birth and death, but for many others, it is just a temporary home. Although their reasons for staying in Seoul vary, Seoul is not truly their hometown. Even some who were born and have lived in Seoul their entire lives do not consider it their hometown. It is different from Edo of the Tokugawa age when Chamgeungyodaeje was executed; however, it certainly had an effect on the architecture or city planning of Seoul. The fact that many displaced people moved to Seoul during the Korean War, is critical to understanding Seoul as a place of birth and death. With the industrialization, urbanization and development of the medical system, most people now give birth in hospitals. Some still choose to go to their mother’s house for delivery, but the vast majority of women now give birth in hospitals. The number of people who use the services of a midwife or give birth in maternity hospitals has greatly decreased. Therefore, the meaning of the mistress room has been lost, and many customs or taboos related to birth have disappeared. This has resulted in a sharp decline in the number of women who visit their mother’s house in the countryside to give birth.


Private facilities, which were once important places for deliveries, have also lost favor as places for delivery. Many ob-gyn doctors now recommend giving birth at general hospitals for many reasons, which has led to a decline in the numbers of rooms at obgyn hospitals. This is also related to the fact that fewer women are having babies. Most women used to visit the ob-gyn for their first delivery because they were worried, but for subsequent deliveries sought help from a midwife. Also, couples have fewer babies these days, which also contributes to the increased percentage of hospital deliveries. Another interesting thing about Seoul is that there are many more places for conceiving babies than for delivering babies. To combat the sterility problem, advanced medical knowledge and techniques, such as artificial insemination, are being used. Even the traditional Korean hospitals that specialize in pregnancies have disappeared. Additionally, there are special facilities to take care of women who have just given birth, even when they give birth in hospitals. This phenomenon can be attributed to the fact that families are no longer able to facilitate these functions. Houses have been preferred as places for death for a long time. Many people go home from the hospital in their final days. However, due to the increased popularity of apartments amongst the middle class, the complicated customs of mourning the deceased at home have become impractical. Many objections to dying in a hospital have also been removed. Since hospitals began offering convenient and affordable funeral services, the general hospitals of Seoul have become the overwhelming choice as the space for birth and death. Seoul was not considered a place for people to stay after death. One reason was the concern for sanitation in the largely concentrated population. The other reason was that death was considered filthy and therefore, Seoul was a place for life, not death. The bodies were moved out of Seoul through Sigumun, or the gate for dead bodies, immediately after the funeral ceremony. The national cemetery in Dongjak-dong and the public cemetery in Mangwu-ri are now within the city, but were outside the old citadel wall and therefore, not in Seoul. The public cemetery in Mangwu-ri has shaken off its past image of sadness and loss and turned into a public park. High-rise buildings and apartments have been built nearby and the Mangwu-ri public cemetery was even designated as a cultural asset. The notion that the graveyards ruined the mountain does not apply in this case. Rather, the graveyards helped to maintain the green spaces in the gray forests of high-rise buildings.

moved outside the four gates. Despite the increased acceptance of cremation, there are no crematoriums in Seoul. Because treating death is still considered filthy and unlucky, crematoriums are also considered an inappropriate facility. In some areas, there have been efforts to build crematoriums near Seoul to increase revenues but these efforts always faced violent opposition from the neighborhood. On the other hand, there are many religious buildings in Seoul. Crosses with red lights can be seen from anywhere at night in Seoul and many large churches have been built. While there are many small churches in commercial buildings, some churches have been designated as cultural assets. Seungdong Church is one such building. Perhaps the number of churches prevails, because there are relatively fewer Buddhist temples in the city. The change in temples is also noticeable. More temples and welfare centers have been built in the downtown area to play a more important social role. Jogyesa Temple is the major temple and has built Buddhist temples in the downtown area for education and social services. It is also building multi-purpose facilities such as conference rooms and large multi-purpose conference halls. The forest around Bongeunsa Temple in the middle of the busy downtown area provides the over-concentrated city with green space and fresh air. Seonggyungwan and Seonggonghoe, or the Anglican Church of Korea, also has large green open spaces. Myeongdong Catholic Church is considered a sanctified area that receives less police interruption, which gives it political importance beyond the religious mission of a Catholic church. Many Buddhist temples, Catholic and Protestant churches, and other religious facilities are being used as social spaces for various roles in addition to its religious purposes. There are many places for traditional religions in Seoul, including fortunetellers and shamanists. Also, Guksadang which was forced to move to its present location from Namsan Mountain in favor of the Joseonsingung, or palace of Japanese gods during the Japanese colonial period, has yet to move back to its original location. Many new shamanistic places have also come into existence. Although there are fewer shamanistic rituals these days, these places still prove to be important spaces for rituals and ceremonies.

The only graveyard within the four gates of old Seoul was for Mrs. Gang who was the wife of the First King, Lee Seong-gye. It was said that the tomb was made in Jeongdong to keep her closer but was later moved to Jeongneung after Taejong ascended to the throne. Due to the new King’s hatred for Mrs. Gang, he had her body exhumed and



Seoul is also the center for ceremonies. Jongmyo, the Royal Shrine of the Joseon dynasty, and Sajikdan Altar, which receives many visitors, are cultural assets and spaces for resting and ceremonies. B2b-19




Myeongdong Catholic Church, which stands tall on the Myeongdong hill facing Gyeongbok Palace is a historical building that has overlooked the modern history of Seoul in the 20th century. The Church has undergone extensive repair work over the last several years and will soon be returned to its original luster. In spite of the many high-rise buildings that surround the church, Myeongdong Catholic Church still holds a special place in our minds as a central place for comfort and peace. B2b-42



Due to the expansion of Seoul during the Gangnam development of the 1970’s, Bongeunsa Temple, which used to be a remote area outside of Seoul, is now in the center of the most developed area in Gangnam. This place also adjusted to the changes by adding new pavilions and facilities. The parking lot of the temple also performs an important role. Bongeunsa Temple is becoming one of the few remaining green spaces in the rapidly emerging high-rise landscape. The green space allows the city to breath and more open spaces translates into a richer city. The reduction of population density is possible only by the construction of public open spaces. Amidst the waves of tall buildings, Bongeunsa Temple has become a unique place because of the surrounding forest that allows the city to breathe. C3-4


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Religious architecture also reflects the time period. While the firmness and seriousness of the architecture of the Seonggonghoe Anglican Church has always given us strength, the Jeoldusan Catholic Church on the hill beside the Hangang River, designed by architect Lee Hui-Tae, appears to embrace us warmly, beckoning to God’s world. Today’s churches are important not only for religious services but also for religious and social education, exchanges and service. The architectural forms and spaces of these religious buildings change to accommodate the future. A2-4, B2b-37, B2b-31, C2-1




Milal School was built as a school for autistic children on the location where a church was to be built. This school, which is used as a church during service times, is becoming a center for the community. The residents, who disagreed to the construction of a school for the autistic, now understand the purpose for the school. Now, it acts as the core space for the community as facilities for the public are added. C3-17




The National Cemetery is the place where the people who died for their country have been laid to rest. The silence and the endless rows of tombstones make us look back on our lives and think about the meaning of life and death. The large empty field and the forest on the surrounding hill also filter dust from this highly populated city. B3-8




Life and death are not so far apart. The Mangwuri Public Cemetery, which was once located outside of the four gates, has now become a part of the city as Seoul expands. And now, due to the recent development, it stands as the last green open space on the east side of Seoul. C1-8


Growth and Education Kwangsoo Kim

This is a collection of images of “the past existing in the present” of the year 2006. In other words, although these pictures are obviously about the “here and now” in Seoul, they are also the stories of Seoul where one feels estrangement as much as familiarity. They are also about communication. Where did all the children go? In our childhood memories, the neighborhood streets and alleys were places of communication and learning. It was here that neighbors, young and old, mingled together, learned from each other, and taught each other about the wisdom of life. The streets and alleys of Seoul were filled with fun and adventure and it was easy to get lost in the sights, sounds, smells, and textures of life. Where did the children in this picture go? Are they on their way to adventure, or did they just disappear? The lives of every generation are divided into segments that are influenced by space and time. Therefore I would say that if a human’s constant and precious education during their growth is isolated in that divided process, and if the big differences between teaching, learning, knowledge and knowing are included in the word “education,”the children are disappearing from the streets. C3-21, B2b-5

C3-21, B2b-5


Between home and school alleys/ Seun arcade vs. shuttle/PC room

B2b-16, B2b-26, C3-21

When asked about childhood memories, people invariably have recollections that do not involve school and home. These recollections of times and spaces between home and school might include unexpected events while playing with their friends, secret conversations in comic book stores, restaurants, ping pong rooms and alleys. For men who were of middle or high school age in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, the Seun Arcade was a home away from home where they learned about assembling electronics like transistor radios. The things they found and learned there were unlike anything they had experienced in the past. They also had access to black market items such as “The Wall” by Pink Floyd, which was banned at that time. People have very fond memories of those experiences. These spaces allowed young people the opportunity to indulge their curiosities anonymously, away from the realities of the streets. The experiences gained in this maze of imagination and reality encouraged these voluntary detours between home and school. Do present day teenagers experience these same unexpected events, secret conversations, and adventures? Do they enjoy a similar mixture of imagination and reality and explore the dark side of the world? As necessary living conditions for humans, it is impossible for them not to have had these experiences. It may be that these experiences are occurring in a space that is not readily visible. In fact, it is difficult to know what is going on in the Internet space because of the limitless possibilities of the Internet. Moreover, the Internet is able to fill the gaps in their busy dayto-day schedules. The alleys where people play with their friends have been replaced by academy shuttle buses and the adventures of the past have been replaced by the Internet. Therefore, cyber space is now trying to govern entity space. While their bodies may be physically located at home or school, they may be traveling around the earth online. B2b-16, C3-1

B2a-6, C3-21


Desert or Oasis In their memories of school, most people recall the playground more profoundly than anything else. They remember their first day, arriving at school holding their mother’s hand. The playground was a boundless ocean or a desert filled with sunshine. And while not all the memories are good ones, they still laugh about them. The playground was a space and a symbol of discipline; the place where students stood at attention during weekly morning meeting, even in cold weather, with the sounds of their teacher’s voices ringing in their ears. The mechanical discipline during P.E. class, punishments, training, marching by fours, fire drills and reserve army discipline were all experienced within the confines of the playground. The arrangement of the playground with its platform and national flag mirrored the arrangement of the classroom. People remember how frightening it could be to stand alone in the playground; the overwhelming fear of being out of order and alone, indicate that the bright and sunny open space was more than just a free space. Just looking at an aerial photograph of Seoul, with its density of buildings, makes it difficult to breathe. However, visible among the jungle of buildings are the dark brown squares, indicating school playgrounds. From this vantage point, the playgrounds look more like an oasis than a desert ? unique spaces amid the density that is characteristic of Seoul. These days, some school playgrounds are open to the community and act as a gathering place for the local community. Lowering the walls of the school and adding green spaces would transform the desert into an oasis and give the local residents a forum in which to communicate. The potential power of these spaces is overwhelming. B2a-6, C3-21



Another school On its surface, continuous learning seems desirable but on further inspection, this desirable phenomenon brings undesirable situations. People need to learn how to play and provide service. These extremes distort the various values of society and greatly affect the city and the construction environment. The good intentions of the city’s plans and policies are irrelevant and will fail if they cannot satisfy the desire for education. The development of Yeouido and Gangnam was successful by transferring schools. The problem is, those desires can’t be satisfied in the public aspect with systematic changes. Now we are trying to get both public and private education. C3-21


Voluntary confinement This is a strange town. The meeting of people who want to confine themselves into a single room, and the people who spend their brightest days in the dark. C3-21

C1-3, B2b-2

The campus and the city College campuses are changing and becoming more open and humble. They have given up the desert-like playgrounds, removed the authoritative characteristics of the buildings, and are pursuing more contem-porary characteristics. Many colleges have removed their playgrounds, which are symbols of collectivism, and have built underground campuses. Other colleges have discovered the important relationship between education and the city. They attempt to isolate the sanctuary characteristics of the city beyond the campus. For example, the campus of Cornell University would not fit in a setting like Seoul. This attitude ignores the important fact that colleges can leverage the benefits of cities. They need to understand that small things can be very powerful and as long as the campus ignores the city, it is difficult for education to reflect or change the reality of the city. C1-3, B2b-2


B2a-9, C1-2

The reality of imagination Imaginary images sometimes appear as reality. What is the relationship between children, marriage and Disneyland? Are we in the pictures which are at the diverging point of growth, or is it our imagination? B2a-9, C1-2



Walls People of all ages are drawn to the city for a variety of reasons. Even people who reside in the same city often struggle to understand each other and the struggle exacerbates the misunderstandings. Therefore, the walls between groups of people become more real and the gaps deepen. Children, young people, adults, and the elderly, all stages of a human’s continual growth, are merely artificial partitions of time. Strangely, these labels serve so strongly to define the spaces and locations occupied by humans. B2b-25


Dwelling Wook Choi


A dwelling encompasses both life and lifestyle. Just as training is required to learn to play a musical instrument, one must learn how to live in a dwelling. And just as an instrument is not the essence of music, the essence of a dwelling lies not in the dwelling itself, but in the person who inhabits the dwelling. Without a philosophy on dwelling, dwelling is merely a shell of life.

A city is shaped by the time of a place and is also a symbol of the inhabitant°Øs desire and motivation. History is the flow of the desire, and the role of the people is to focus that desire. Cities have existed in deserts, forests, on water, and on the ruins of ancient cities; Seoul is a city that has stayed in one place for a long time. In search of the genius loci of Seoul

The center of old Seoul was a small kingdom that consisted of administrative offices, villages, and markets surrounding the palaces. In the civic center of the larger metropolitan Seoul, home to over 10 million people, palaces are located between the mountains, which spread out like fingers; these palaces are linked together with dwellings, buildings and businesses. The tracks of ancient and modern history in the vicinity of Gyeongbok Palace, the heart of the city, has been blended together or discarded without rationale. With respect to the relocation of the administrative capital, the area offers an opportunity to deliberate its “sense of place” and meaning.

Newspapers often reflect the landscape of a country. It appears that a “new apartment campaign” is still going on in Korea as an extension of the “new village campaign.” Unfortunately, without a guiding philosophy, dwellings are nothing but empty cans. A few cities in Italy adopted a “slow city” slogan which encourages cities to create their own philosophy beyond the shape or economy of the city. This allows the cities to accept the possibility of extending the past and slowing changes in the name of sustainable life. It is the extension of this LOHAS (lifestyle of health and sustainability) concept which is being actively discussed.

The reason for tracking the accumulated culture of a historical place and dwelling is not to revisit the past, but to discover the value in the present, and in doing so, find the creative evidence necessary to move toward the future.

At present, the dwelling features of Korea are dark and somber. However, they represent the characteristics of the present, especially the need to focus on the evolving dwelling culture in the Gwanghwamun area. Since this culture is not representative of Seoul, we need to focus on establishing the future by discovering the potential value of those present characteristics.

Architecture is the image produced by recording the history of a place and time. As such, it is like a tree rather than the fence around a garden. Just as a tree is rooted in its place, architecture must be similarly rooted to a place. Like planting and watering a tree, wisdom is required to watch the landscape and recover the uniqueness of the place by embracing the time.

Culture is a result of place and life. Described below are the dwelling features within a 2km radius of Gyeongbok Palace, the center castle of Seoul.



Bukchon Landscape Bukchon is the residential area located to the east of Gyeongbok Palace. This area still has traditional Korean houses. However, it has lost popularity due to its incompatibility with changes in the lifestyle of Seoul. Recently, the area was renovated by craftsmen who, within a few years, have recreated a traditional village with the help of scholars and local communities eager to maintain the local culture. B2b-18


New Phenomenon No.1 due to the High Density of the City In order to sustain the harmony of life, a residential culture must track the rapidly changing landscapes of the older, culture-rich places, and study its meaning by recording the architecture and life of these places. B2a-16



New Phenomenon No. 2 due to the High Density of the City The city changes every 50 years. Ironically, because of these changes, we focus on philosophical subjects of constant and slow change. Were it not for these changes, dwellings would require little attention. B2c-2




West side of Mt. Inwangsan Between the mountains and valleys where houses and roads are built, animals and plants grow. These plants and animals, along with other forms of life that dwell underground, are the true inhabitants. People are merely intruders. B1-3



East side of Mt. Inwangsan Like gaps between fingers, houses also need proper gaps between each other. That gap doesn’t necessarily determine density. Providing a gap proportional to a place requires wisdom. B1-3



Landscape No. 1 of Bukchon Korean Traditional House Village When asked about the first place they remember, children do not talk about shapes or details. Instead, they talk about the light, humidity and smells. A dwelling should be understood not by its shape or size, but by lifestyle and reflection. B2b-18



Landscape No. 2 of Bukchon Korean Traditional House Village A few years ago, my office was located on the hill of Samcheong-dong and the early morning landscape approached as a silhouette on my window facing the Gyeonggbok Palace. Viewed from afar, the silhouette of Mt. Inwangsan and the roof line of Gyeongbok Palace appear above the folk museum. In the morning, Bukchon comes like a wave over the rooftops. Morning in the city approaches and with it come sounds and landscapes, not brightness. B2b-18




Landscape No. 3 of Bukchon Korean traditional house village Think back to the space of your childhood and the decades of memories connected to it. What makes us remember a space? What is a dwelling? A dwelling, like our facial expressions, is a diary made with memories and the records of our lives. B2b-18

Work Suk Yeon Yoo


Carrying out the destined purpose of life, A means to support life for rest and leisure, An escape route of the desire towards perfection of self, The mainstream of behaviors that shape our society, An important activity of our life when the educational period is over, Means that controls and shows off one’s lifestyle, A medium to convert people into a tool, as a part of an invisible system... These are fragments of thoughts on ‘work.’ “Work,” which takes up 1/3 to 1/2 of our lifetime, shows itself in the fast pace of the big city, or in the daily routine of our ordinary lives. Or, it appears as the large office buildings that form a compounded skyline, small to medium-sized rental office spaces extending along the street line, and the countless small work spaces. As such, the work space exists in any small crevice of a city. One can read fragments of the social structure of the 21st century city in the shape and characteristics of the organization of these work spaces.

Here, I will try to construe the work space of the city of Seoul in terms of sharing, style, environment/nature and complexity. Sharing The concept of sharing, such as sharing the cityscape by introducing the cityscape into the building by opening up a part of a building, or the active design for public use, appears to be an architectural solution that directly benefits the public. Active development of lobbies, atriums and gardens on the ground floors of large-scale business buildings are just a few ways to contribute to the community. Other methods include inviting public needs in development; connecting the underground commercial/cultural facilities or the lower part of the office building to the subway stations ; aggressive design of the green spaces in business facilities for the public use; and outdoor lighting. These strategies are actively utilized by many big corporations as a marketing tool to promote their brand images and ideals. Style Various work styles are reflected in the structure of a work space and its appearance. A work space can embrace a creative and personalized work environment that respects particular lifestyles and preferences, or inserts outdoor spaces such as roof gardens into indoor spaces. The desire to stand out among similar looking business buildings results in a “landmark.” This is accomplished through the expression of volume by means of different materials or mass, and by expressing a special dynamic feeling or style. Environment/Nature A healthy building that can be divided into several segments to create various contact points with the city, and at the same time exert a variety of expressions, directly affects the productivity of the building. On the other hand, buildings with intelligent building system (IBS), represent another attempt to display an intelligent facade and control the indoor environment with state-of-the-art equipment. Building higher is an alternative to secure as much open space on the surface as possible. Collectively, these open spaces can create a continuous natural environment that can be a place in the city for events or exploration. Complexity A cityscape is formed by building activities of different periods compounded by various architectural intents and languages. Architecture as experienced from a vehicle is different from the experience gained from walking. The vehicular experience requires a special attitude such as monumentalism which is compounded with mobility. Also building activities in the historical sites of Seoul necessitates a unique compromise between old and new. Moreover, with the Internet age, there are many opportunities to integrate work spaces into a residential space. In this case, the characteristics of the space can span commercial, business and residential facilities and sometimes the actual work space is hidden by the residential facilities.




Four corten boxes of Welcomm City are sitting on a concrete stylobate which accommodates an exhibition space, a restaurant and a reception area. There are madang’s (courtyards) between the four boxes which were created, and as a result open the view corridor toward Mt. Namsan behind the building. The configuration may not be functional but demonstrates the architect’s intent to visually share the empty space with the public and add a measure of richness to the building and its surroundings. B2b-11


The open space dedicated to the public on the northeast side of Posteel Tower on Teheran Street is extended and open to the lower part of the cantilevered building. The space visually connects the south and north sides of the site to coincide with the city context, providing easy access to the sunken garden located on the underground floor. The lobby space on the west side uses transparent glass to make it psychologically easy for the public to access the building. C3-11


The work space in the Donga Ilbo Building at the corner of Cheonggyecheon-stream and Sejongno, starts at the 5th floor. Cultural facilities such as the DongA Media center, a newspaper museum, and the Ilmin museum of Art occupy the lower four floors. These cultural facilities, combined with the outdoor recreational facilities of the Cheonggye cheon-stream make the building an important city landmark. New large-scale office buildings built in the vicinity of a busy area near subway stations tend to connect its basement floor to the subway station to accommodate cultural and commercial facilities extensively used by the public. After a long discussion during the design period for the GS Tower near Yeoksam subway station, it was decided to utilize the odd portion of the site for an art center to promote the GS Group’s contribution to art and culture. In addition to the art center, the GS Tower allocated a generous part of the building for public facilities such as the multi-purpose hall frequently used for wedding ceremonies, an underground shopping mall connected to the subway station, and restaurants. C3-9



The people in the Econet Center near the elevated subway between Seongsu and Ttukseom Stations, visually communicate with the passengers in slow moving subway trains, because the long atrium of three floors are visually open to the overpass tracks. Once-a-month musical performances open to the neighborhood make its neighbors feel comfortable enough to come to the “dream garden� on the 2nd floor and rest. B2b-11





The external appearance of Sang-Sang Museum, which uses prominent shapes and different materials for each floor, opens up the imagination during fun events. A2-1 The expression, which shows the program of the building as it is, can be distinguished from the desire to “stand out” or “look different” by pouring a lot of effort in exterior decoration and ornaments. With the transparent showroom on the 1st and 2nd floor, the solid mass of floors 3 to 5 for storage, offices that have windows when absolutely necessary, a studio, and a creative work space, SJW Fashion Building offers rich expressions. Pursuing a personalized and creative work environment which respects the individual’s taste or work style, is the reason behind bringing outside spaces, such as a deck or roof garden inside. C2-21





Even in the Gangnam area where there are extraordinarily many high-rise apartment buildings, the line of high-rise business facilities on Teheran Street, a Mecca of international finance, trade and IT venture companies lend a unique skyline. Dongbu Financial Center, located on the west side of the POSCO center, uses the straight line of various curtain wall surfaces to express a dynamic effect. C3-14 Standing out amongst the other building groups, Posteel Tower on the north side of Teheran Street in Gangnam, in contrast with the metallic texture, is configured with a slanted transparent glass wall for maximum exposure to the northeast side. The building, which consists of four masses assembled together, looks different depending on the angle and can be distinguished from other typical buildings that consist of lower, mid and upper floors. C3-11



Kyobo Tower, a strong building that can be a landmark as the architect intended, consists of two red masses and a transparent bridge between them to control the visual balance. The architect used red brick, which is a common material for lower buildings, in this high rise building. The building also demonstrates the architect’s insistence on pure geometric shape among the high-rise buildings infested by the sign boards on Gangnamdaero Boulevard. C3-11


Environment Nature


The buffer zone between the interior and exterior of Hyunamsa building forms diverse points that interface with the city. It also shows diverse expressions when it meets with nature. Layers of outdoor spaces that cut through the masses when a residential building is remodeled, balconies, and exterior stairs that are extended into the interior, creates a rich environment in a small space. This building is often cited as a case where the health of the work environment is directly connected to the productivity of the work. B2a-17


High-tech buildings, oriented for transparency, seeks to display a state-of-the-art, intelligent image. Further, the external surface extends into the interior of the major space, creating a duplicate image as seen in the atrium of the new SBS Broadcasting Center. This building, which adjoins the forest of mixed-use buildings in Mok-dong, adopted the IBS (Intelligent Building System) to control the indoor environmental conditions. A2-13

Environment Nature



One example of a work space oriented to the south for the sun to the maximum is the Econet Center. The neighborhood park to the south, in contrast to the overpass tracks at the north, is an oasis in Seongsu-dong, which is known more as a factory zone. Many madang’s or courtyards, each located on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd floors have a close relationship to each other, and expands the environmental and visual pursuit towards the south. C2-7 The roof garden hidden in the boxy building of the Hyundai Marine Fire Insurance building in Gwanghwamun induced exterior space into the building by carving out the interior space. Since spaces of this type form a close-up view distinguished from the nature viewed in the distance, they are “designed spaces,” which are tactile and oriented for more concrete activities. B2b-28


The desire for high-rise buildings to go up higher and higher makes the city darker. It is very important to make efforts to create more green open spaces for the public not only to control the density of the city, but also to enhance the quality of life by enriching the diversity of the city environment and providing composure to life. The newly restored Cheonggyecheon stream, which involved the demolition of elevated freeway and concrete cover over the stream, brought breathing room to the forest of high-rise buildings. The stream reminds people of the joy of walking, offers a way to experience the diverse layers of the city, and is transforming Seoul into an active city with water fountains and many other landscape designs. C2-2


The city landscape, which duplicates many visual images, can be influenced by the building activities of its subjects over a period of time. A city is generated through an accumulation of layers, such as various styles reflecting different ages and exterior materials, various heights decided by legal restrictions, and various building activities that reflect the paradigms of a period. The cityscape of the high-rise buildings fills the space between the ground level and the sky. The cityscape seen from the number 1 tunnel of Namsan and the scene viewed from Euljiro-1ga to the north leaves a strong impression because of the slanted lines cutting through the building mass and the bravery of emptying the middle of the upper stories.


Sang-Sang Museum is the eight-story building with floor area of 1650 square meter on the site of 450 square meter near Hongik Univ. Station. The 1st floor is leased to a clothing store, the 2nd and 3rd floors to a beauty salon, and the underground and 4th floors are used as a studio and work space for the owner of the building, who is a photographer. The building’s owner lives in the residential space on the 6th floor. This building represents the characteristics of an area where commercial, work space and residential facilities are mixed together. A2-1



New buildings in historical site of Seoul face an important decision as to how to harmonize with the existing context. Bohun Building, which is adjacent to the traditional Korean houses in Bukchon Village, made a great effort to go along with the neighborhood by installing a traditional fence as a border with the city, utilizing dark materials for exterior finishes, and devising an direct access leading to courtyard. B2b-12


New Consumption Spaces Young Chea Park


Seoul is a city of consumption. In addition to the 10 million Seoul citizens, many Korean people come to Seoul to spend money, and Seoul provides them with a variety of products. In a capitalist society, consumption and production are at the opposite ends of the spectrum and yet they are inextricably linked. The needs and demands of the consumers are the driving force for the production of goods. However, the consumption patterns of Koreans have changed along with their increased wealth and changes in lifestyle. In the past people consumed to meet their needs, not to indulge their tastes. People no longer buy clothes merely to keep their body warm. Practical consumers who consider function and quality are no longer the target customers. People express themselves through the products they buy and the places they shop. This behavior has become a cultural activity - people finish their day by browsing or window shopping in streets, department stores and shopping malls. In addition to product consumption, consumption of facilities has also become more popular. Karaoke rooms, phone rooms, Jjimjil bangs (saunas), gathering rooms and laundry mats are examples of places where people pay money to use facilities. The consumption and availability of these rooms has emerged as a new paradigm. On the other hand, complex cultural consuming spaces are being built, where everything can be found in one place. Some examples include: the COEX Mall, Central City in Gangnam Terminal, Sky City in Gimpo Airport and Sangam World Cup Stadium. Each of these places has a mutiplex theater and areas to eat and drink, so people can entertain themselves in one place. The main products found in Namdaemun and Dongdaemun are clothing. However, these areas also provide other products in the same building to serve people from all over Korea. These products stimulate and draw people together. They create a fantastic atmosphere with various images and symbols that stimulate people to consume. The consumption culture is encouraged by accommodating places for entertainment and food such as: movie theaters, game zones, restaurants and clothing stores. Exits are located everywhere without any obvious logic, which can cause confusion and encourage people to wander around. However, this is all intentional. The arrangement of the space is designed to create a flow of traffic to encourage spontaneous consumption. People walk around, enjoy the atmosphere, eat food, touch and purchase products in these planned spaces. The complex consumption spaces that offer various products exist everywhere in Seoul. They share the same characteristics, shapes, and images that encourage consumption. Franchise stores provide the same flavors, products, and sounds with the same brand name. There is no longer only one downtown area, or a central center for consumption. The great city now has multi-nuclei including: Yeongdeungpo in Gangnam, COEX at Samsung station, Gangnam station, Jamsil, Sinchon, Jongno, Dongdaemun and Cheongnyang-ri in Gangbuk.





Myeongdong once was the center of finance and culture, and still manages to be a commercial area with high land prices. Even though Gangnam has taken over as the expensive commercial area, Myeongdong is still one the most popular consumption areas in Seoul, drawing foreigners as well as Koreans from rural areas. B2b-42 Myeongdong was once filled with Japanese who lived in Hanseon (the old name of Seoul), during the Japanese colonization period. Then, after the Korean War, the market in the area was flooded with American products smuggled out of the US Army. Now, a number of largescale apparel marts such as the Mesa have been built, but the street vendors still play an important role. B2a-2



Starting out as the Kwangjang market 100 years ago, Dongdaemun market has been developed, adding various features. Presently, there are 32 arcades and about 30,000 stores in the market. What makes Dongdaemun market unique is the combination of production and consumption in the same place. More fashionable clothing market buildings are still being added in the area, and the newly restored Cheonggyecheon stream has made Dongdaemun market even more active. B2B-9


Yeongdeungpo subway and train station, along with the Cheongnyangni station, is an important entry point for the people who come to Seoul from rural areas. Yeongdeungpo station has long enjoyed a reputation as the commercial center for southwestern Seoul. In addition to its great geographical advantage, the area is well developed with commercial, entertainment, and financial facilities, along with department stores and traditional markets. A3-3


Since 2002, the city of Seoul has been working on ways to improve the environment of the 100 or so traditional markets in Seoul. Jayang market, for instance, started its improvement project in 2003 and turned into an “alley market covered with a roof.� D2-3



Colleges are coming back to Daehangno. Sangmyung University, Dongduk Women’s University, and the Kookmin University campus have been added to the existing Sungkyunkwan University, Catholic University of Korea, Korea National Open University, and Seoul National University in Daehangno. The increased rents for the commercial buildings, however, drove theaters and other cultural facilities out of the area. As a result, Daehangno has become an entertainment area rather than a cultural zone. The consumption pattern in this area is changing from cultural to entertainment. B2b-4


B2a-13, A2-2

Consumption patterns in Sinchon, where Ewha Womans University, Yonsei University and Hongik University are clustered together, are changing like in Daehangno. Once a battleground for young people fighting for democracy in the 1980's, this area is now a commercial battleground for retailers. B2a-13, A2-2



COEX, a huge complex facility in the heart of the Gangnam, consists of the Trade Center Tower, ASEM Tower and two five-star hotels. COEX Mall connects all of these facilities at the underground level. The large number of people gathered here every weekend demonstrates its success as a commercial space. C3-7



Gangnam, or the area south of the river, began to develop in the 1970’s. Now it has become another major civic center of Seoul. With Gangnam Station at its center, the area has a commercial area represented by Teheran Road, and a large number of apartment housings, which lends both residential and commercial characteristics to the area. C3-8


Recreational Areas and Cultural Space in the Civic Center Kyung Rip Park


Recreational and cultural facilities including parks are necessary factors that bring energy to city life. As the economy grows, cultural facilities and recreational areas become even more critical. Now, Seoul is transitioning from an age of filling in spaces to an age of emptying them out. International festivals such as the Asian Games, the Olympics, and the World Cup were opportunities to change the cultural environment of Seoul. Many of the new facilities were built with large parks and open spaces. There was some concern that the facilities would remain as mere memorials after the games, but most of the facilities have become everyday recreational areas for residents. The World Cup was an especially important opportunity that transformed the cultural environment of Seoul. The main roads and traffic squares were filled with Red Devils which shocked the world. The convergence of the IT industry and these world-class events changed the external appearance of many high-rise buildings. The cityscape of huge screens occupying the walls of high-rise buildings became a unique feature of Seoul. In addition, the facilities that were built for one-time events were reviewed in advance with an eye toward sustainability. The World Cup stadiums are perfect examples. The stadiums and the World Cup exhibition spaces were reconfigured and are now occupied by large shopping centers, theaters and wedding halls. To maintain the unique spaces of Seoul, and to heal the side effects of the development-focused growth, there have been many efforts to create spaces for the general public. Small parks have been built between apartments, child protection areas have been designated, public green spaces and parks have been built, and rooftop gardens have been placed on the top floors of civic centers such as Seoul City Hall annex and the UNESCO building. All was done in an effort to maintain green spaces in the high-rise era. Gyeongbok Palace, one of the five palaces which act as an oxygen tank for Seoul has been restored. Changgyeong Palace was also returned to its original condition along with the Jongmyo royal shrine which was registered as a UNESCO world cultural asset. These places are rich in history and show that the essence of traditional architecture has become a popular destination for tourists. An added benefit is the decreased density of the civic center, and the establishment of recreational places that allow Seoul to breathe. The ecosystem of Mt. Namsan was also recovered after a long period of misuse and is now providing recreational opportunities for the public. The Hanul Park of Nanjido, which long received a great deal of attention was successfully restored and has become a lovely place for walks. Even though it has only recently opened, many people are visiting Seoul Forest, proving its success. One of the important phenomena in the 21st century is the success of musicals and performance arts. Rather than depending solely on the import of foreign performance

groups, Korea must expand the scope of Korean arts and entertainment. The increased desire for culture along with economic development has encouraged the acceptance of performances in various places, which are attended by different classes and ages of people. In addition to big theaters such as Seoul Art Center, Hoam Art Hall, and LG Art Center, small theaters in Donsung-dong and in front of Hongik University provide venues for a variety of performances. Hwarangga (or street of galleries) which stretched from Gyeongbok Palace to Insa-dong has now been extended to Samcheongdong Street and was recently expanded to Apgujeong-dong in Gangnam. Libraries have become important facilities for education, and cultural halls in district offices are playing active roles while searching for unique identities of their own. Myeong-dong, which suffered a decline in the past, was revived through the merchant’s unity. Pedestrian-only streets and street festivals have stimulated the revival of the commercial area. Rodeo Street in Apgujeong-dong, cafes and the various small performance halls in Hongdae Street have been embraced by the younger crowd and are becoming globalized and individualized. The changes to the streets in front of the universities such as Yonsei University and Ewha Womans University are also worth examining. Moreover, the developed streets such as the main streets in Yeongdeungpo and Sincheon-dong are proof of the multi-nuclear trend in Seoul. Jongno 2(i)-ga Street, which is home to many schools, is not connected to a residential area, and has become a street of consumption and entertainment. On the other hand, schools on other streets in Mok-dong, Daechi-dong and Junggye-dong have affected land prices in Seoul. The cultural landscape in these areas has also been shaped by the young people who frequent the area. The desire for open squares for people, which began with the World Cup, has altered squares once intended for automobiles into human-centered squares. 5.16 Square, which was the political square, became a park for the public and provides a good resting place for local residents. The square in front of Seoul City Hall has become a site for a variety of events. It is used for ice-skating during the winter, ceremonies and important events, and sometimes as the center for protests and political rallies. This is a good example of how an altered mindset can impact the environment. Yongsan has been the subject of heated discussions concerning its reconstruction. Even though the US Army is still located there, it is an important place that will dramatically change the geography of Seoul in the future. Yongsan will undoubtedly become a culturally significant area of Seoul. The National Museum of Korea, located in Yongsan, will be a center for the maintenance, advancement, and education of Korean as well as international history and culture. Furthermore, the Samsung Museum Leeum, is a good example of a building that has demonstrated the potential as well as limitations of cooperation between Korean and foreign architects.




National treasures No.1, the Sungnyemun area, which was a traffic square surrounded by high-rise buildings, has been newly reborn. The sidewalk was built at ground level so the gate, which for a long time was inaccessible, can now be opened. A grass yard was also created where tourists can view the changing of the guard. B2a-2



The National Museum of Korea which opened in 2006 is emerging as the center for the preservation of history and culture, exhibition, publicity, education and the development of the Yongsan area. B2d-6



Wongudan Altar, the place where King Gojong performed the ceremony to the sky and became king, has been trapped by buildings. During the Japanese colonization, this place was demolished and a hotel was built. Now, the altar stands alone in front of the Joseon Hotel as a historical monument. B2b-33

The pocket gardens that have been created in many places in the civic center enrich the city.



Just looking at a pavilion gives people breathing room. C2-10


Cheonggyocheon stream has become an open recreational space in the civic center. C2-2


There are few places for the elderly of Seoul to go. In fact, Jangchungdan Park, which stretches from Tapgol Park to the Jongmyo Royal shrine, is one of the few places where retired people can go to rest. B2b-20


The parks in the civic center are sources of life. A well-organized park is not just a place for humans to rest, but is also home to animals and plants. C2-10



Many examples of nature can be found in the civic center of Seoul. The sights, sounds, and smells of nature are beautiful to behold and help clear the mind. Moreover, mountains and water should stay together to create a more synergetic effect. C2-10



The trees here are not yet mature. However, this place will be a real forest in 20 years. Bright sunlight cuts between the closely planted trees. C2-10


The tall trees planted along the riverside of Sangam-dong and the roads are very impressive. A2-7


B2d-1, B2d-2, B2b-19

Museums, cultural centers, and libraries are educational places and the stewards of Korean culture. Here, people can reflect on history and dream about the future. B2d-1, B2d-2, B2b-19


The Paper-tainer, a temporary Museum in the Olympic Park made of paper and designed by the Japanese architect, Shigeru Ban, sparked a huge cultural shock. C3-24



Insa-dong, crowded with many visitors, is also a popular area for young people. This area, with its narrow alleys, traditional Korean houses, antiques, old book stores and contemporary galleries is a cultural area, and a center for the exchange of culture that still retains Korean features. B2b-24



People love to wander around. The streets and the squares are resting places for the public. B2b-24



Although the space in front of Seoul City Hall is still surrounded by cars, it has been transformed from a traffic rotary into a square for citizens, and is filled with energy. Accessibility was increased by the addition of crosswalks and corridors to other areas. It also functions as the connecting point to peripheral areas. B2b-31



A2-5 A2-5

The mountains behind the stadium and the apartments are imposing and beautiful. The mountains have been there for millions of years and have witnessed the history of Seoul. A2-5

The interior of the World Cup stadiums, which were a source of unity for the Korean people, were reconfigured into supermarkets, wedding halls, theaters, and entertainment spaces, and are models of sustainability. A2-5



Samsung Museum, Leeum, is a good example of a project that has demonstrated the potential and limitations of cooperation between Korean and foreign architects. B2d-10



The higher the high-rise buildings go up, the fewer spaces are left for people to rest. However, the rooftops of high-rise buildings in the downtown area of Seoul are no longer underutilized. As more highrise buildings are built, the roofs are becoming the building’s backyard. They are places where workers can rest and give life to the somber gray buildings. B2b-32

The Dynamic Future



T h e

D y n a m i c

F u t u r e

Yong Jae Lee

In the 21st century, the changing urban agenda and the complication of various cultural codes have been expressed more strongly than in the past. In this context, it is necessary to focus on the changes in the cognitive transformation affecting the current viewpoint of urban identity. This is because a city is a unique place where technical progress, cultural emotion, historical tradition and futuristic monumentality collide. From this perspective, it is clear that the contemporary architectures of Seoul, with its blended cultural codes, evolved from the architectures of the past. It begins with the international exchange of culture and information which is facilitated by Seoul’s urban architecture. Another factor is the constant emergence and disappearance of residential housing from the architectural landscape. Seoul’s transformation from a production city into a high-tech, environmentally-friendly city, highlights its status as a new breed of industrial city. In the process of creating a positive urban architectural environment, it is necessary to recognize that buildings in the downtown area are getting taller and more densely clustered. Also, it is important to note that the urban architecture of Seoul, which exists in a multi-cultural amalgamation, is a model of diversity. The identity of the urban architecture of Seoul can be found in the dynamic futuristic fusion of culture codes produced by the evolution of people and the environment. With these points in mind, the contemporary urban architecture of Seoul is reviewed with respect to five categories.

International Space Consider the urban architecture of Seoul as an international space. At the turn of the millennium, Seoul stands out as one of the important international cities. Seoul’s central role in IT technology and finance, as well as its status as the host city of international events, forces Seoul to adapt quickly to changes. In fact, the concept of the city, with respect to the contemporary perspective, is now more of an international community space that transcends geography and time zones. A city is a space for international information exchange. At this moment in Seoul, there are massive international projects brought in from all corners of the globe. In particular, with respect to urban architecture and the culture and environment, there has been an effort to focus on the qualitative rather than the quantitative value of architecture. This minimizes the problems and the side effects resulting from the previous development-based policies. This situation is the result of pursuing Koreanization to meet the demands of internationalization. In the urban architecture of Seoul, these spaces include COEX, a space for culture and events, the Hangang River, the Cheonggyecheon stream, Insa-dong, the airport (a reflection of the complex transportation system), and the World Cup stadiums that showcase international athletics. In these spaces, the internationalized city of Seoul finds a balance between the culture of architecture in the 21st century and the prospects of the future. Disappearing Landscape and Appearing Landscape Consider the impacts of new towns and redevelopment, which is considered on a contemporary urban scale, as the architectural aggregate of the residential environment in the new landscape city. The landscape of the city is transformed based on the prevailing attitudes of the times, and this evolution can bring many changes into our daily lives. The modernized urban housing situation has a bigger impact now than in times past. Skyscraper apartments and large apartment complexes have become the predominant housing type. In this way, the policy changes that affect housing have become a part of our lives, and create a new landscape while diluting the familiar, existing landscape. While our lives have been made easier thanks to modern conveniences, it cannot be denied that the modernized residence is diluting the significance of the natural environment. It is clear that the urban architecture with respect to the contemporary perspective must approach both aspects with sensitivity. Thus, it is necessary to look back at the residential architecture in the contemporary city and find a balance between the disappearing and the appearing landscape. On this issue, the adjustment to a new environment will be described in terms of landscapes where new towns and remodeling projects such as Gireum New Town, Wangsimni, Eunpyeong New Town and Sangam Digital Valley, are combined with high-rise complex apartments in many places like Gangnam and Gangbuk.


Another Aspect of Seoul - Industrial City By reassessing Seoul as a production city in the contemporary perspective, the aim is to find alternatives for creating an environmentally-friendly new industrial city. Modernized industrial cities have always been considered a systematic space and the source of quantitative productivity. However, the industrial city in the contemporary perspective is becoming the source of non-material, digital, high-tech production. Furthermore, the exchange between countries and the shrinking technological gap, resulting from overseas competition, makes it necessary to compare how the current urban architecture in Seoul plays a role in the environment. Seoul is the heart of residential, administrative, commercial and cultural urban architecture in Korea. Nevertheless, it is surprising how many manufacturing and industrial facilities exist in Seoul. In fact, the modernized industrial facilities of Seoul, located in the Kyongin area, are not disappearing. Rather, they are continuously evolving through changes in architectural typology or production systems. This is reflected in the apartment-type factories of high-tech images, knowledge-based electronic information, or multimedia industries. By adopting environmentally friendly methods and actively focusing on the merits of non-polluting industries, the industrial facilities are constructed in harmony with the residential surroundings. In particular, the Yongsan Electronics Shopping Mall combined with the transportation system and the Sangam Digital Media City aim to become media centers. These centers are becoming more stable as hightech production facilities become a larger part of the urban architecture in the new industrial city. This observation leads us to renew our view on the urban architecture that is transforming places like: Guro Digital Valley, Gasan Digital Complex, Yongsan Electronics Shopping Mall, Dongdaemun Fashion Town and the Sangam Digital Media City. Other examples include: the Dangilli Power Plant based on the appearance of Seoul in the past, the shopping strip along the Cheonggyecheon before restoration, and industrial parks in Yeongdeungpo, Garibong and Guro-gongdan. Higher, Bigger, Deeper By understanding Seoul as a vertical three-dimensional relationship, it is possible to observe architectural space in the urban context from a variety of different angles. While Seoul as a world class city became competitive in multidimensional international relations, the aspects of functionalism and the skyscrapers of urban architecture has established its urban identity in the height and scale of buildings. Economic development, influence on the international community, and the development of hightechnology, develop architectures that are suitable to the new urban space. It is then that the architectures of Seoul are set up as urban architecture with contemporary value.

To understand the urban architecture of Seoul, it is necessary to not overlook the qualitative aspect that cannot be measured by height or scale. In fact, in order to make a city into an environment for humans, the design of each space must be evaluated by how each space is manipulated, separated or combined - not on the metrics of height or scale. Before embarking on the qualitative analysis of urban architecture, it is more appropriate to evaluate metropolitan cities by putting a higher value on the architectural environment representing city life. A competition based on building height and scale cannot be the standard used to define a city. To define the high-rise city, it is necessary to start by examining the various top floor designs used in high-rise office buildings in the Gangnam area. It is also important to look at the collective space of the buildings in the skyline with respect to the relationship between the city and its architecture. Another challenge is to understand the relationship between buildings, street furniture and sculpture in the creation of the city street’s image. In addition, examining the reflective image of architecture and filtering the continuous landscape, multiple floor spaces are suitable approaches to discovering the dynamic aspect of the city. This point of view is the most poetic approach to uncover the emotional limit of a contemporary city when it is impossible to reconstruct the natural architectural environment. Multinational Culture The architectural environment of Seoul, as a multinational city, will be discussed as the part of the unique formation process of diversity and the mixed characteristics, called the hybrid. As a capital city, Seoul has contributed as cultural aggregate and a production agent of new culture. In particular, the exchange of diverse cultures in the last 2,000 years resulted in rapid progress through active international cultural events, compared to the historic and geographical exchange of culture since the opening of the Joseon ports. For instance, the 2002 World Cup was not only a sporting event that competes for rankings, but also a harmonious cultural experiment which provided the opportunity to reduce the physical and temporal distance for culture exchange. Meanwhile, the multi-nationalization of culture can be expressed by the number of foreigners residing in this country. However, the variety of cultures can be seen as the adoption of the culture in either a positive or negative way, depending on the situation. In the case of Seoul, the effort to find the solution to the current situation has already started. Thus, sincere and fresh options to minimize the spatial limit of the physical and temporal territory are coming out in the multicultural community areas. These multicultural areas of Seoul’s diverse community include: the Seorae village of French culture, Ichon-dong of Japanese culture, Itaewon Muslim mosque of Arab culture, Garibong-dong mainly with Chosun people, Myeong-dong/Sogong-dong Yeonnamdong China town of Chinese culture, Hyehwa-dong Philippine market, and Euljiro-6 ga Gwanghui- 1 dong of the ethnic culture of central Asia.


Global Space In Ho Jun


Seoul, which is home to more than 10 million people, has held key roles in the political and economic culture of Korea since the Joseon dynasty 500 years ago. As the capital city of a top 10 economic power, Seoul has a diverse culture like many comparable global cities. The question then becomes, “which space can be identified as representative international space and how can its concept be defined?� This question can be approached with diverse points of view that we must address in order to make Seoul into a global city and a functional space instrumental to international business. Such globalized spaces include: the COEX, the Hangang River, the newly restored Cheonggyecheon stream, Insa-dong, Itaewon, Gimpo Airport and Sangam World Cup Stadium. The most core global space is the COEX culture center in Samseong-dong, where diverse spaces such as the 55 stories of the Trade Center, the ASEM Tower, and various other international conferences coexist with the COEX mall and its commercial culture. Furthermore, there are various business buildings for international exchange near the COEX, and residential spaces have been developed to symbolize the OECD economic power. Many international projects are currently underway around the Hangang River, the representative scenic resource of Seoul. Seonyudo, which received an international environment golden award, the Nodeulseom opera house, and the Ttukseom business development projects are good examples of the effort to bestow an international status to the Hangang River.

Insa-dong, the street that maintains the characteristics of the Korean traditional road, is becoming the cradle of the Korean traditional culture, offering a variety of contents. As a cultural street with traditional foods and gallery buildings, it has many possibilities as a global space. Itaewon Street, eager to seek new programs, expresses the American culture. These days, there are many plans to improve the area to promote a healthy night life by eliminating its reputation as a street of ill repute. There are also concerns about the effect on this space as a result of the relocation project of the Yongsan US Army Base. A more dynamic street culture can be created by improving the environment of the street and pursuing new concepts and programs. Gimpo Airport, opened in 1971, has played an important role as the main gate for international exchange, until the recent opening of the international airport in Yeongjongdo, Incheon. After the international flights moved out, the vacant spaces were redeveloped for various functions including Sky City, a shopping mall complex. The airport still functions as a direct connection to Haneda Airport in Japan. There are many more global spaces in Seoul. In order for Seoul to maintain various features as an international city, it is essential for the city government as well as concerned citizens and research organizations to make an effort. These spaces should be developed further for sustainability into unique global spaces.

There has been some criticism of the Cheonggyecheon stream restoration project, but the project has been highly appreciated as a restoration of the natural environment and a historical asset. More travelers influenced by the popularity of the Korean pop culture called Hallyu are participating in the tours, and visits from environment experts are also increasing.



International Trade Center COEX COEX, which was established in 1973, has been the location for various exhibitions and conferences for international exchange. It is also the biggest international space in Korea and plays host to various cultural and art events, including important domestic and foreign events such as the ASEM conference. C3-7


International Trade Center ASEM tower Including the third Asian European Meeting in Oct, 2000, the ASEM tower has hosted many international events such as the Nobel Peace Prize Centennial Exhibition, Seoul International Book Fair, International Trade Service Show and the OECD International Workshop. C3-7


Gimpo Airport The history of the airport began when the Japanese army began constructing runways in Banghwa-ri, Yangseo-myeon, Gimpo-gu and Gyeonggi-do in 1939. Later, commercial airlines were able to use the airport as the US Air Force began using the area. When it was designated as Gimpo International Airport by the president’s order in 1958, the Gimpo Airport period was opened. Since the opening of the Incheon International Airport in Yeongjongdo, Gimpo Airport operates with a few lines to Japan and China. It is currently being used as a cultural leisure complex that includes the Sky City.



Sangam World Cup Stadium Sangam World Cup Stadium, inspired by the traditional Korean kite, contributed to the promotion of Korean sports to the world. It is especially loved by citizens because of the success of the Korean national team during the World Cup. A2-5



Foreign City Itaewon Itaewon, a product of the Korean War, is a tourist destination well known to foreigners. It is said by many that one knows Itaewon even if one doesn’t know Seoul. A variety of commercial and cultural facilities can be found along the street. After the planned US Army relocation, it is expected to be developed as a new international cultural area. B2d-11



The Reborn Cheonggyecheon Stream The Cheonggyecheon stream was restored as a new concept that has no precedence anywhere in the world. Thanks to the stream and Hallyuwood fever (the current popularity of Korean pop culture), many environmentalists and city experts are visiting from all over the world, and the stream has become an important place that symbolizes Seoul. B2b-44



Seoul’s Citizen Stream The area around the stream has experienced tremendous cultural changes after the restoration of the Cheonggyecheon. The area is becoming famous as a cultural complex with shopping and places to rest. B2b-44



C2-12, B3-1, B3-4, B3-2


The Hangang River Often referred to during the unprecedented economic development of Korea as the “miracle of Hangang,� it is an important place to advertise Seoul to the world. There are many projects in progress, including the Hangang Nodeulseom Opera House project. C2-11, B3-1, B3-4, B3-2


The Disappearing and Emerging Landscape Jae Soon Synn


The addiction to height and speed are new characteristics that have been adopted by the citizens of Seoul and have led to the rapid growth of the Korean economy. These characteristics have appeared in many remodeling projects, including the ”new town” redevelopment project, development projects of the super high-rise apartments, and residential-commercial apartments of Gangnam, Yeouido and Mok-dong. All of these have greatly changed the landscape in Seoul since 1990. Seoul has suffered from many negative trends, due in part to the concept of the modern era that separates residential and work spaces. The explosive expansion of traffic originating from the modern concept of single zoning in the 1980’s is just one example of a negative development. Seoul has tried to solve these problems by encouraging mixed land use. The development of residential-commercial and commercial-business-residential complexes was considered a good plan to prevent the continual decline of the city’s population. It was also a political plan to remodel the undeveloped areas both inside and outside of the city area through redevelopment. Mixed-use developments along the arterial roads have been around in the form of commercial-apartment buildings. However, the city plan and construction concept for mixed-use developments began in 1967; the first example was the Seun Arcade apartment. The residential-commercial concept, which includes everything from wholesale, retail, offices, hotels, theaters and entertainment facilities was very innovative at that time. That project also made the planners dream of connecting a green axis for pedestrians from Mt. Namsan to the Jongmyo Royal Shrine. This plan was not realized due to conflicts of interest. Since most stores were wholesalers or distributors of industrial and electronic products from all over the country, the project was never realized as a shopping mall. Accordingly, the green axis for pedestrians was also never developed. Apartments located above stores never established a bond with other nearby apartments and became isolated islands. Now, 40 years later, the area is waiting for a new blueprint for redevelopment. There were a few residential-commercial buildings built for redevelopment during the 1970-80’s. However, more high-rise residential-commercial buildings have appeared since 1990. Seoul increased the floor area ratio and the ratio of residential portion, in response to the lack of residential space in Seoul and the constantly increasing population. It also allowed the construction of residential-commercial buildings in semi-residential districts to encourage the construction of larger residential-commercial buildings all over Seoul. As a result, super high-rise and luxury residential-commercial buildings appeared. This policy provided advantages to large construction companies, which were limited by the distribution price and the difficulty of finding new site. This led to a boom of high-rise and luxury residential-commercial buildings, rather than the existing boring plank type apartment.

In 1999, the limitation for apartment size in residential-commercial building was abolished, opening the door for construction companies who wanted to increase profits through large apartment buildings. The result was high-rise residential-commercial buildings such as Acroville, Tower Palace, I-park, Trumpworld, Castle, and the Hyperion. These buildings were landmarks in height, so they had a significant affect on the skyline and landscape of Seoul. The purpose of the residential-commercial policy of Seoul was to increase the apartment supply while avoiding the insufficient land problem that plagued Seoul in 2000. Currently, residential-commercial buildings are exploiting the building laws and district planning that used to regulate the skyline and building densities. These buildings are popular with the upper class people who want to be different, and are emerging as a new landscape. Another factor in the changing landscape of Seoul is the high-rise apartments which appeared in Gangbuk, and the large residential office-tel buildings which are part of the city redevelopment plan. Whenever redevelopment projects for the old and undeveloped areas of Gangbuk are executed, the dense housing clusters at the foot of the mountains disappeared and were replaced by high-rise apartments. Unlike Gangnam, the lyrical landscape of Gangbuk, which is related to many mountains, hills and the Hangang, has been disconnected or severely threatened. Soon the clusters of houses and small city streets of Gangbuk will disappear and be replaced by high-rise apartments. On the other hand, after it was decided to build the main 2002 World Cup Stadium in Sangam-dong, the Nanjido and Sangam-dong areas also underwent significant change. The landscape with its foul smell and landfills underwent a cataclysmic change. The Nanjido landfill was changed to Sky Park and Sunset Park, and the hills around the parks and the World Cup Stadium were developed for apartments and Digital Media City. Seoul is a very interesting city. On the one hand, there are efforts to recover aspects of the old historical city by recovering the Cheonggyecheon stream, opening the Sukjeongmun gate area, finding the original location of the Gwanghwamun gate, and rediscovering Mt. Namsan’s original shape. On the other hand, there are many things happening that cause people to ignore the harmony between Seoul and its mountains and rivers. It will be difficult for Seoul to find its identity in the face of these opposing efforts.



The skyline in Dogok-dong, Gangnam-gu where hotel-class luxury residentialcommercial buildings are concentrated. C3-19


Residential-commercial buildings that soar upwards from the middle of the street make up the American-style landscape which is newly appearing in Seoul. C3-19



The skyline near Dogok-dong, Gangnam-gu as viewed from Yeoksam-dong. These are the high-rise office buildings and have been the landmarks of Seoul for a long time. However, high - rise apartments or residential-commercial buildings have started to replace them recently. C3-5



Hyundai I-park in Samsung-dong as viewed from the Tancheon stream in Jamsil. C3-6


Main facade of I-park as viewed from Yeongdongdaero Street. C3-6



Landscape viewed from St. Mary’s hospital in Yeouido. The apartments which were built under the control of the master plan are creating a new landscape with high-rise residential-commercial buildings soaring upwards. The apartment buildings in the vicinity will follow the trend. After a few years, there is a possibility that Yeouido can be a mountain instead of an island on the Hangang River. A3-11


Landscape near the creeks in Yeouido. The scale of the residentialcommercial building on both sides of the 63 building, and the hospital and churches in between, looks significantly different from the existing apartment scale. A3-12



Shocking landscape in the Chenggyecheon stream 8(pal)-ga. The restored Cheonggyecheon flows behind residential-commercial buildings which are being constructed on a large scale. After all of the effort to recover the old stream, they are dividing it with big walls.

There were many houses as shown below in the picture, but now there have been many apartments built through redevelopment. Many areas have experienced this kind of redevelopment in the mountains and hills of Gangbuk. Their residential environment needs to be improved, but high-rise apartments, which block the landscape, should not be the only solution.




The Digital Media City being built near the World Cup stadium is designed for the information, communication and financial industries, and is composed of advanced industrial office buildings and apartments. It is located beside the small hill but is not an effective means of connecting a mountain and a hill. A2-5

High-tech buildings are under construction in the center of the Digital Media City. A2-6

There are many clusters of detached houses on the hill close to the Eunpyeong New Town construction field. This area is excluded from the new town project for now; however, the area will most likely be included in the same project. What kind of new town planning can make a healthy and harmonious area for living in an area like this?



Yongsan Area Landscape: A master plan for the area after the relocation of the US Army that includes the National Museum of Korea and Yongsan family park is not yet prepared; however, high-rise apartments are already soaring up in the area. B2c-7



Strong indulgence for height makes it hard to see the sky from the indoors in this area. C2-14


The newly built residential-commercial buildings in Jayang-dong, Gwangjin-gu dwarf the existing apartments and schools. C2-14


When the new town in Mok-dong was constructed, office buildings near the central axis were limited to 20 stories and apartments were limited to 15 stories. Due to the slow sale of the main lots, the building height limitation was relaxed and high-rise residential-commercial buildings and office-tels were constructed. The skyline consisting of 15 stories apartment and 20 stories office buildings was totally destroyed. A2-15



Luxury residential-commercial building in Mok-dong, Hyundai Hyperion. A2-15

The Different Faces of Seoul, an Industrial City In Suk Yoon


In Seoul, the industrial area was established mainly in the Gyeongin area after the opening of the harbor. The factories were built in this area because it was easier to move goods from Seoul to Incheon harbor using the Gyeongin railroad. The large factories and facilities built densely in this area following the Japanese colonization were the symbols of Korea’s modernization. The increased concern with the environment was developed during the process of democratization. However, hi-tech industries were strongly pursued. As a result, most of the smokestacks have disappeared and the area is experiencing fast change into the so-called Seoul-type new industry. As the old industries are relocated to neighboring countries and Seoul adopts new industries, its appearance will change. Hi-tech buildings with cold images represented by glass walls are being constructed in the old industrial park. In the space between these buildings, trees and grass are planted to create an environment-friendly atmosphere. The new task of handling logistics in the city is also being taken care of.

However, the shadow of the modernization period still remains in many of the alleys of Seoul. The modern industry is located in Yongsan, Mapo and Gyeongin-gado Road in Seoul. Yongsan became the industrial city after the train station was established and Mapo after the brick factories were built. The highway from Incheon, which was the gate from the other countries to the western area of Seoul, made logistics of transporting products easier, which in turn allowed the industrial area to be established here. Naturally, they were primarily the smokestack industries, which were the picture of the capital city formulated over a period of the 100 years of the 20th century. However, from the end of the 20th century, as the Korean industrial structure began to change, so did the type of manufacturing facilities. Labor intensive manufacturing facilities moved to foreign countries due to increased labor costs, and advanced industrial facilities began to fill up the empty spaces. There are still a few smokestack industrial facilities in Seoul represented by the Dangin-ri power plant. The existing industrial city concept has changed to the apartment-type factory concept along with the evolution of the city. The spaces once occupied by the smokestack industry have been filled with apartment-type factories. The factories which stood firm to run heavy machines to make goods have disappeared and been replaced by buildings that look like apartments with small manufacturing facilities on every floor. On the other hand, the evolution and changes of Seoul can be expressed with the term “Seoul-type new industry,� which refers to knowledge-based industries rather than physical labor-based industries. These include electronics, information, communication, the software industry, fashion industry, animation industry, multimedia-contents industry, and character industry. Urban architecture is also changing in an effort to meet the needs of the advanced technical area. Seoul, which has grown into a huge city, is still being developed with active construction projects. Seoul is preparing for the future with a new dream. What is the meaning of advancement in this age? How will the next age of industry establish itself? This problem is not limited to Seoul, but should take into consideration the entire country, all of Asia, and even the entire world.



In the 1980’s consolidated power generating systems were adopted in the new cities of Mokdong and Noweon-gu at the time of their inception. A2-14


Dangin-ri Power Plant is located on the north side of the Hangang River, which once flowed at the periphery of the city. The plant was used to fire coal to produce electricity, but since this area became the sub-center of Seoul, it changed its fuel from coal to low sulfur gas and liquefied natural gas. Thermo-electric facilities have also been established to provide electricity and energy without pollution. A2-3



One of the industries alive in Seoul is the car repair industry, called “car centers.� They provide active services for machines of various types in residential areas. We can easily see how the old factory sites of the last century are evolving into spaces for distribution and service. C2-11


The distribution of tools and machines is also processed on Gyeongsugado Road. The distribution buildings that have been built on the outskirts of the city are so big that they need four or five-story parking garages. A3-10



The factory of the Dongnip Industry, a food supplier established just after Korea was freed from Japanese colonization, is still actively engaged in production following a change of ownership. A3-3

The industrial area, which is filling up with nonpolluting industries, has also been transformed into an apartment-type factory. Many of these places also perform the function of sales and distribution.


Apartment factories did not survive long. They had all but disappeared by the end of the 20th century under the pressure of the 21st century digital industry.



One of the unique cityscapes of Seoul features indoor driving ranges for golf practice. People practice golf with the dream of playing on a real green. The residential culture that spawns the ubiquitous apartment building has had the same affect on these sports facilities.


There are no vacant land parcels in the outskirts of Seoul. There were bus terminals at the peripheral area of Seoul, however, they have moved to other cities away from the outskirts of Seoul. Seoul has become a city where even a bus terminal cannot survive, which is one of the phases in the evolution of a city. A3-9

A3-9 A3-7

Since the production facilities in Seoul do not need a chimney, they can be accommodated in high-rise buildings. Recent trends involve “office-tels” and work/living spaces which are the next-generation concept of the apartment factory concept. A3-9

The places which have experienced the most drastic changes of the 21st century are the Gurogongdan and Garibong areas. Even the names of the subway stations were changed. Gurogongdan has been changed to “the Guro Digital Complex” and Garibong to “the Gasan Digital Complex.” In addition, the characteristics of this area evolved from labor-intensive manufacturing, to businesses complexes that produce digital images in cyber space. A3-7


Along with the changed characteristics of the towns, the buildings have also changed. The area, which was once filled with factories and warehouses, has been filled by the reconstruction wave. The landscape of low factories, warehouses, and smokestacks has changed to rows and rows of glass-walled high-rise buildings.

Buildings are directly connected to subway stations by many different facilities. The underground passages that begin at the subway stations are extended to each building. Sky bridges have been built to connect the buildings above ground-level. Indoor spaces of these buildings are organically organized to accommodate office and production spaces together in the same building. The spaces and manufacturing facilities are organically combined inside the buildings.


There are many devices to bring air and sunlight into the building. All of the walls are made of glass, and resting places for the employees are placed on every floor. Also, there are small parks on the ground level to make a leisurely working environment. Roads are also paved for workers to walk around comfortably.

When the industrial structure changed in this country, the people who were willing to “venture” came to this place. Naturally, many buildings have names with the word “venture” in them. Venture Town, which is a village for people who try new things, is changing into a digital complex. With the new goal of pursuing technical development, the manufacturing station became a “techno village.”



Products need to be sold, and there must be places to sell them. This place is the extension of the factory-direct-sale places where products were sold directly to the consumers. Along with the high-tech design of the building, stores on the lower floor have upgraded interiors and facilities, which are better than those of department stores. B2c-4



When did Yongsan become the distribution center for electronics? This place consisted mostly of fruit and vegetable markets until the 1980’s. As Seoul grows, Wonhyoro in Yongsan became precious land for the produce market to receive trucks transporting agricultural products, vegetables and fruit. The produce market was moved to the new facilities in Garak-dong at the outskirts of Gangnam, and the Yongsan area was redeveloped for the assembly and distribution of electronics. B2c-4


The businesses here moved from the Cheonggyecheon shopping street or Seun arcades in downtown and have dealt in electronics before. Some of the goods sold here include finished products made by large companies. This place, however, is famous for the “assembled on demand� products which the technicians of the shop assemble according to the specification of a client. People can buy new and used products from all over the world in bulk. In the early years when the electronic stores began to take over this place, there were even long-distance bus terminals for people coming in from the country. Now the bus terminal has been converted into a store building. B2c-4



The stores in this area started in fresh new buildings unlike the dark and narrow buildings of the Cheonggyecheon and Seun Arcades. However, since the development progressed one building at a time, the buildings were mostly medium-sized and independent. The area soon became congested once again. Along with the change in city functions that spread out all over Seoul, they affected each other and evolved into many different features. In the 21st century, Yongsan station became the first station of the rapid electronic railway, prompting the construction of many other facilities around the station. Now, cleaner distribution centers and cultural facilities are being built so people who come to this area can enjoy convenient accessibility, new buildings, big discount stores, movie theaters, restaurants, bigger parking lots and other new facilities. B2c-5


Moreover, this new place not only has assembly and distribution functions, it also has “cultural spaces” and satisfies the new expectations for consuming space in the city. Retail stores that are directly connected to the manufacturer, open cultural spaces in the downtown area, and the industrial spaces of Seoul are being changed in this way. Now, this place has developed into a communication space where people can relax while listening to classical music away from the dark old buildings in the Cheonggyecheon area. B2c-5


There is a “fashion town” in Dongdaemun. The sewing factories in Changsin-dong nearby make clothes which are sold in Dongdaemun. This area is famous for cheap and quickly manufactured fashions, and has become the most important shopping stop in Seoul. Since labor costs are expensive in Korea, many labor-intensive processes have moved to China. The home sewing industry still maintains its old skills and focus on handcrafting. The people in this town are studying to improve their sewing skills to enhance their competitiveness with complex and unique designs. B2c-9



Digital Media City is not just a science station. It seeks to seamlessly integrate work, life and leisure. Seven projects were initiated in an attempt to reach that goal. These projects include building a highspeed network, world famous research institutions, cultural content, city structure that can accept advanced facilities, and public support facilities to provide combined administrative services. A2-6


Seoul transformed the Kkotseom-Nanjido island from a garbage dump into an environment-friendly island and began the construction of the Digital Media City on a nearby site. The idea is to build a future industry by creating an ecologically sensitive city and add value to Seoul with IT technology and the Digital Media City. Seoul is certain that this course will bring about economic and environmental sustainability. A2-6



This place, with the ecology park of the Sangam area as a background, is filled with hammering and other sounds of construction. Even though the buildings have cold faces and their expressions are covered with metal and glass materials, we hope they can accommodate humans and maintain nature. A2-6


Higher, Stronger, Deeper Yong Jae Lee


Let’s analyze the three-dimensional relationship of a city’s space and shape from various perspectives. High-rise buildings, which are highly functional and prolific in modern cities, are evaluated by their height and scale. They identify a city, and by these standards, Seoul is already recognized as a world city. The developing economy, international administration, and development of state-of-the-art, high-tech areas required a new city space in Seoul. As a result, Seoul has been evolving. Development around Gangnam, which has strong contemporary characteristics, is balanced out with Gangbuk, which offers traditional characteristics. Now, Seoul displays the contemporary characteristics of a modern city. There are only three Korean buildings on the list of the world’s 100 tallest buildings. From this point, the proper vision for Seoul is to build the best urban architectural environment, not just the highest. It starts with an examination of whether the urban spaces of tall buildings are properly integrated and/or divided, not just by function, but also in relation to the change of the urban environment. As buildings get higher and more complex, it is inevitable that shape and space is expressed in a variety of ways. The best image by which one can understand the features of Seoul begins with the formulation of a skyline. Take for example the high-rise office buildings standing along the streets from Gangnam to Yeoksam and Samseongdong; the line connecting the top floors of these buildings is an important design factor in the city's identity.

The cityscape we are familiar with are street decorations, such as street lights, product advertisements, sculptures and sunken atrium shapes - not the high-rise buildings which are hard to see from street level. Though many city buildings are making progress, we may find that the value of our historical city is built around natural features such as rivers, streams and forests. Another feature of Seoul, with its high and dense urban architecture, is the reflections of the city off the building’s glossy exteriors. The reflective glass used in high-rise buildings not only creates a flat surface, it also reflects the neighboring buildings. In addition, distorted images that are reflected on nearby sculptures give a fresh perspective to ordinary street decorations. With respect to multi-storied spaces either above or below ground, a “filter” is the boundary of the building. Filters are often found in the buildings of Seoul, since buildings are directly connected from the inside to the outside, and from above ground to below ground. It can usually be found in a sunken space with depth. A dramatic image of the upper portion for the building can be observed through a skylight from a lower level. The view through the skylight may, itself, be an unfiltered natural view. Whether used inconspicuously or obviously, the view can be used as a filter to show various aspects of the building. As such, the buildings of Seoul can be examined in terms of the height, the shape of the top floors, the formation of a continuous skyline, and effect created through the use of architectural filters.

While the continuous city buildings form horizontal shapes, the open sky between the buildings can be vital for the urban space in the vertical point of view. In a sense, this view represents the emotional limitations of the contemporary city which cannot be reverted to the pure natural environment. In fact, the image of the tall buildings huddled around the patch of urban sky resembles people engaging in conversation. This characteristic humanizes the city, as does the pseudo-natural environment created by planting trees and building water fountains. As long as we respect Seoul’s organic aspect, while allowing the buildings to express their own intentions, we may find ourselves in a more familiar and emotionally friendly place, rather than a dry and uniform urban environment.


B2b-39, D2-4

City Sculpture The characteristics of large buildings in Seoul are not just determined by unique shapes and spaces, but also affected by street lights, direction signs, artifacts and sculptures. Architects make an effort to bring harmony to the building and its external sculptures. B2b-39, D2-4


C3-7, C3-14

City Sculpture Design efforts to integrate the building into its environment vary, which is yet another characteristic of the contemporary building of the city. In addition to decorative art, all the factors that make up the environment reflect the contemporary society of Seoul. Buildings are becoming a new cultural and environmental medium with advertisement boards, atrium shapes, or by becoming a work of art. B2b-39, D2-4



Communication It is inappropriate to view buildings as objects, isolated from their surrounding environment. They share their city space with the surrounding buildings and through communication, cities and buildings form a community.



Reflective Images The materials used in high-rise buildings reflect the city and create a natural image that injects a fresh, new energy into the daily city routine. City buildings reflect their features on their neighboring building surfaces, and change their features with the passage of time. C3-7


Filtering Making multiple floors in a space provides buildings with individual filters. Each filter affects the city landscape by influencing all dimensions of a building from the inside, outside, top, bottom, underground and aboveground. It sometimes highlights the quiet of the city in a square frame, and other times forms a dynamic landscape in a rhombus frame and functions as a dramatic filter.



Looking at the Skyline Due to our relative heights, we can’t experience a high-rise building in one glance. In order to understand a city building, it is necessary to raise our viewpoint to the top floor. This is because the various shapes of the top floors show their identity, and make the city skyline a new design factor. C3-12



Multinational Culture Jong Yup Lim


If one considers China Town, which was formed when the Qing Dynasty people moved to Korea in 1883, to be the first foreign village, it can be said that the number of foreigners and villages has increased for the last 120 years. According to the National Statistical Office, the number of foreigners in Korea now exceeds 470,000; this is about 1% of the entire Korean population. The total foreign population is estimated to be 750,000; this number includes illegal foreigners and other excluded foreigners which make up 1.6% of the entire population. The number of foreigners who came to Korea with the “Korean dream” in 1990 was only 0.15% of the whole population. However, the number of foreigners increased at an average of 18% per year for the last 10 years - that is approximate one foreigner for every 100 Koreans. Excluding the people from advanced countries (about 10%), most foreigners in Korea are from China, Vietnam, the Philippines and Middle Asia; however, the number of Africans is also increasing rapidly.

There are also 11,005 American, 8,703 Taiwanese and 6,521 Japanese foreigners. In addition, the number of East Asians is also increasing with 3,368 Philippines and 1,914 Mongolians. These totals would increase dramatically by taking into account illegal foreigners. Diversity, mixture, and hybrid are becoming the global topics of the era, and a metropolitan Seoul is already flooded by these characteristics. Such diversity necessarily has to coexist with the unique identity of the city in consideration of the compatibility and sustainability of the city. The diversity and mixture demonstrated in Seoul, however, are a matter of concern in terms of its process and methodology. Though the multicultural mindset is evolving, the construction one sees in the city is very weak. Therefore, serious and fresh plans are required to change the physical aspects of construction and city. A “boundary-less village” is needed where foreigners and Koreans can coexist in the local community, forming a multi-cultural community.

Organized as a single nation, Korea was closed to the outside world for a long time. It is now slowly opening up to change its global economic system and communication structure. Seoul, in particular, as the representative city of Korea, should be the center of change and embrace its multi-national characteristics. According to Seoul city public statistics, the number of foreigners living in metropolitan Seoul was 113,844 by the end of September, 2005. This is 2.5 times more than the 45,072 foreigners in Seoul 10 years ago. The largest group of foreigners in Seoul is the Chinese with 53,415 members.


B2d-9 B2d-9

Inside of the Hannam-dong Islam temple 500-600 Islam followers gather together in the Islam temple every Friday for service. Islam followers gather together from all over the capital area on weekends, so the number of restaurants and shops is increasing. B2d-9


Hannam-dong in the Islam temple aspect Hannam-dong has a more multi-national and mixed image compared to other foreigner resident areas. B2d-9


Hannam-dong Islam temple Hannam-dong, where the central Islam temple is located in Korea, has different characteristics from the uphill geographic characteristic, and it forms the proper boundary and location characteristics for the village characteristic. B2d-9



Landscape of the Chinese-Korean Street at Garibong-dong “Chinese-Korean Street,� which is mainly in the Garibong-dong, is forming a special place in Seoul for the ChineseKorean village, and they are spreading into the Guro-dong, Daerim-dong and Gasan-dong areas. This place provides comfort to Chinese-Koreans in Seoul and is expected to be a test village for national unity. A3-8



Garibong-dong market entrance Chinese-Koreans who came to Korea with the “Korean dream” live mainly in this place. The one-room apartments and boarding houses, which have very low rental fees, are forming their own “nest.” A3-8


Chinese grocery stores in the market This place, which connects the Chinese merchants’ community, offers a special view by mixing Chinese northern culture and the Korean culture. A3-8




Philippine market at the Hyehwa-dong rotary The street near the Hyehwa-dong rotary, which is connected to the Hyehwa-dong Catholic Church, is filled with Filipino people every Sunday. These hard-working people make friends here and share their experiences. B2b-3


Goods in the Philippine market Hyehwa-dong Philippine street market is open from 9 am to 5 pm, and is also a strong expression of multiculturalism which can be found in Seoul. B2b-3



Seoul French School in Seorae village This is the “little France in Seoul� in Seorae village, where approximately 800 French residents live. The construction, which was designed by a French person, expresses the central characteristics of this village. B3-15



Montmartre Cafes in Seorae village There are French word signal signs, 3 colored board block, and “Montmartre 4” street names. You can also see French words for wine shops, bread stores and grocery stores. B3-16


When children get off from school, the quiet Seorae village suddenly becomes busy. Groups of blue-eyed children and French moms come to pick up their children with strollers. B3-16


Cheongryong Children’s Park in Banpo-dong You can see trees planted by the French in the 6,000 pyeong “Montmartre Park.” Here, the French people enjoying taking walks and exercising. B3-17



Stores in the area near the Chinese embassy in Myeong-dong Korea Sogong-dong is known as the area that has the most traditional Chinese town in Seoul. B2b-43


The landscape near a small Chinese School in Hanseong, Myeong-dong It appears smaller than before, but maintains the feel of a Chinese hometown. It is also a symbolic place that shows the history of political and economic change. B2b-43


Hanseong Chinese middle and high school entrance in Yeonhui-dong Yeonhui-dong, which is a “little China town� in Korea, is where most of the Chinese people in Seoul reside. B2a-5


B2b-10 B2b-10

Mongol tower information in Gwanghui-dong 1(il) ga On the street from the Dongdaemun Stadium Station exit number 12, which is known as the Beorumul-gil, all the names of the video theater, chicken store, and general stores are written in many different languages, which is one way to identify a new foreign village in Seoul. B2b-10


Back street of Gwanghui-dong 1(il)-ga This is located in the back of the subway line number 5 Dongdaemun Stadium Station exit number 12. The Gwanghui-dong area of Jung-gu, Seoul has become a sort of combination Russia and middle Asia village. The middle Asia village in Euljiro 6(yuk)-ga is a fascinating place to visit. B2b-10


Middle Asian restaurant street of Gwanghui-dong Restaurants with signs in strange languages, and unique smells make a foreign landscape in Seoul. This place was formed for traders from Mongolia, Gorye, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Russia. B2b-10






Bamseom (Islet) p.101 Photographer: Changmo Ahn

SBS Broadcasting Center Mok-dong, Yangcheon-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2005, Architect: Choi KwanYoung+Cheong Dong-Myeong

Digital Media City pp.350~351 Sangam-dong, Mapo-gu, Photographer: In Suk Yoon



A2-13 Inside Digital Media City p.328 Photographer: Jae-Soon Synn

Bamseom(Islet), Vew from Seogangdaegyo (Bridge) p.44 Photographer: Tai Young Yang

A2-7 Sang-Sang Museum Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul, Korea 28th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2005, Architect: Moon Hoon/HAMA, Photographer: Yong Kwan Kim

SBS Broadcasting Center p.251 Architect: Kwan-Young Choi + Dong-Myeong Cheong, Photographer: Wan Soon Park

Haneul Park pp.72-73 Photographer: Young Chea Park A2-14 Woodland path near Haneul Park p.283 Sangam-dong, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

A2-18 Thermo-Electric Power Plant in Mok-dong p.336 Photographer: In Suk Yoon

A2-8 Sang-Sang Museum pp.244-245 Architect: Moon Hoon, Photographer: Yong Kwan Kim

Bamseom(Islet), Vew from Seogangdaegyo (Bridge) p.45 Photographer: Kwang Suk Kim

Yonggang-dong, Mapo-gu pp.124-125 Photographer: Sang Koo Lee A2-19


A2-2 Seonyudo-island Park 25th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2002., Seoul Architectural Awards 2003, Architect: Sung Yong Joh, Johsungyong Architect+Young Sun Chung, Seoan Total Landscape, photographer: Jae Kyung Kim

Deserted Railroads p.145 Sangsu-dong, Mapo-gu, Photographer: Changmo Ahn

Vanishing railroads in front of Seogang University pp.146-147 Photographer: Changmo Ahn

Hyundai Hyperion in Mok-dong pp.332-333 Photographer: Jae Soon Synn A2-16

The Korea Development Bank Yeouido-dong, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Architect: Heerim Architects & Planners+ DMJM Keating

Fashion Street of Hongik Univ. p.267 Photographer: Young Chea Park



Seonyudo Park p.47 Photographer: Eun Jeong Jeon

A2-3 Dangin-ri Power Plant p.337 Photographer: In Suk Yoon


Seonyugyo p.46 Photographer: Eun Jeong Jeon

A2-4 Jeoldusan Martyrs' Museum p.196 Photographer: Kyung Rip Park


A2-9 Hangang Park (Seonyudo & Yangwha District) p.56 Photographer: Eun Jeong Jeon

A2-5 A2-10 Seoul Worldcup Stadium Sangam, Mapogu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Architect: Choon soo Ryu, Beyond Space Group


Sangam Worldcup Stadium pp.290-291 Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

Seongsandaegyo (Bridge) & Eexcursion ship Photographer: Eun Jeong Jeon A2-12

Sangam Worldcup Stadium pp.308-309 Photographer: In Ho Jun

View near Sangam Worldcup Stadium p.328 Photographer: Jae Soon Synn


Hangang Park (Nanji & Mangwon District) p.57 Photographer: Eun Jeong Jeon


Private House 'Sunshine Dazzling' Seoul Architectural Awards 2003, Architect: YOUNG-SOO LEE, Architectural Environment Group, Photographer: Jong Oh Kim





Overview of the Chinese-Korean Street p.370 Garibong-dong, Guro-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim

A3-1 Garibong-dong Market Entrance p.371 Garibong-dong, Guro-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim

Air Force Club Singil-dong Youngdungpo-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Wonyang Architects & Engineers Co., Ltd. Photographer: Tae O KIM


Chinese Grocery Stores p.371 Garibong-dong, Guro-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim

A3-2 A2-9 Yeongdong Church Singil 7(chil)-dong, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2006, Architect: Seung Hoy Kim, Won Phil Kang A3-3

View near Doksan Station pp.342-343 Doksan-dong, Geumcheon-gu, Photographer: In Suk Yoon A3-10

Yeongdeungpo Market pp.264-265 Yeongdeungpo-dong, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Photographer: Young Chea Park

Distribution Center for Industry Materials & Parking Building pp.339 Siheung-dong, Geumcheon-gu, Photographer: In Suk Yoon

A3-4 A3-11 CJ Yeongdeungpo Factory (Former Dongnip Industry Co., Ltd.) p. 340 Photographer: In Suk Yoon

Landscape viewed from St. Mary's Hospital p.324 Photographer: Jae Soon Synn

A3-5 A3-12 Sinteuri Apt. 3 Sinjeong-dong, Yangcheon-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Archiect: Gil Won Ahn, MOOYOUNG AMECS

View near Yeouido Saetgang (Tributary) p.325 Photographer: Jae Soon Synn



Hwa-Won Welfare Center Gurobon-dong, Guro-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2006., Min Suk Cho + Suk Soon Joo, Dan-A Architects & Interior Design, Photographer: Jae Young Park A3-7


Guro Digital Complex Station p.343 Guro-dong, Guro-gu, Photographer: In Suk Yoon






Naksanseonggwak-gil p.32 Photographer: Sang Koo Lee Kim Chong Yung Sculpture Museum 26th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2003, Architect: Jai Eun Lew+ Cheol Soo Han, Architects Group SEE, Photographer: Seon Nam-Gung



East of Seoul, View from Naksan (Mt.) p.89 Photographer: Changmo Ahn

B1-6 Eunpyeong Public Library Bulgwang 2(i)-dong, Eunpyeong-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Arhictect: Jae Hwan Kwak

The road to the Naksan Park from Samseongyo (Br.) p.175 Photographer: Doojin Hwang

Art Center of Kookmin University Seoul Architectural Awards 2003 B1-7


Grand Hilton Hotel Convention Center Hongeun-dong, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002,, Junglim Architecture Co., Ltd., Photographer: Young Chea Park

Company House of Volvo Construction Equipment Korea Seongbuk-dong, Seongbuk-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2001, Architect: Tae Yong Yoo



B1-3 Seoul from Inwangsan (Mt.) pp.30-31 Photographer: Sang Koo Lee

Light House Hyehwa-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Hyoman Kim, IROJE KHM Architects, Photogrpher: Jong Oh Kim

Inwangsan Seonggwak (castle walls) p.96 Photographer: Changmo Ahn


B1-9 Seoul Seonggwak (castle walls) Inwangsan (Mt.) p.171 Photographer: Doojin Hwang

East Side of the End of Inwangsan (Mt.) p.229 Gugi-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Wook Choi

West side for the end for Inwangsan (Mt.) p.231 Hongeun-dong, Seodaemun-gu, Photographer: Wook Choi

Hongjecheon (Stream) p.67 Photographer: Young Chea Park B1-10 B1-1

The 600th Anniversary Memorial Hall, SungKyunKwan University Myeongnyun-dong 3(sam)-ga, Seoul Architectural Awards 2001., Architect: Il In Hwang, ILKUN Architects Engineers Ltd., Photographer: Chai Su ok



B1-4 Sukjeong-mun (Gate) of Bugaksan (Mt.) p. 173 Photographer: Doojin Hwang


Downtown from Bugaksan (Mt.) p.173 Photographer: Doojin Hwang



B2a B2a-1

Architect: Hyuk Kim+Kwantec Jung, JUNGLIM Arhictecure, Photographer: Wan Sun Park


Overseas Chinese High School p.209 Yeonhui-dong, Seodaemun-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim


Geumhwa Elementary School p.209 Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi


Sinchon Station (Railroad) p.144 Seodaemun-gu, Photographer: Changmo Ahn


Sinchon p.267 Seodaemun-gu, Photographer: Young Chea Park


Seoul Staion Bongraedong-2ga, Jung-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Archiplan Inc. Architects & Planners

ARTREON Changcheon-dong Seodaemun-gu, 26th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2003., Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Young Kern Park + Jun Sung Kim, BAUM Architects, Engineers and Consultants, Inc., Photographer: Won Yang Kim

Fomer & Latter Seoul Station p.132 Photographer: Changmo Ahn

Seoul Station (Seobu Station) from DAWOO Building p.132 Photographer: Changmo Ahn Seoul Station p.133 Photographer: Changmo Ahn



Vestige of Seodaemun Station p.131 Seodaemun-gu, Photographer: Changmo Ahn


Spot of Seodaemun (Gate) p.94 Photographer: Changmo Ahn B2a-4

Gyeongui Line (Railroad), Seodaemun Section p.142 Photographer: Changmo Ahn B2a-15 Road through the Mountains p.140 Bugahyeon-dong, Seodaemun-gu, Photographer: Changmo Ahn



B2a-16 Namdaemun Plaza & Seoul Station p.93 Photographer: Changmo Ahn

Design Center, Ewha Woman's University Daehyun-dong, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2003., Architect: Seonghong Park, Junglim Architecture Co., Ltd., Photographer: Young Chea Park

B2a-2 Namdaemun Plaza pp.168-169 Photographer: Doojin Hwang Namdaemun Market p.261 Photographer: Young Chea Park

Morning of Gyeonghuigung (Apartments) p. 225 Naesu-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Wook Choi B2a-17


Namdaemun (Gate) Inwangsan (Mt.) p.274 Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

Hyeonamsa Ahyeon-dong, Mapo-gu, 23rd Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2000, Architect: Moon Sung Kwon, Atelier17

Yeonhui Kindergarten p.216 Ihwa-dong, Seodaemun-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi


B2a-10 View to Seoul Staion from Namdaemun (Gate) p.275 Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

HYUNAMSA publishing company p. 250 Architect: Moon-Sung Kwon, Photographer: Jung-Sik Moon Public Model Toilet Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Architect: GANSAM Partners


Leejinah Memorial Library Hyeonjeo-dong, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2006, Archiect: Hyungwoo Han B2a-4

Seodaemun Youth Center Seoul Architectural Awards 2006,



B2a-18 Amphitheater, Ewha Girls' High School Photographer: Doojin Hwang p. 170 B2a-19 Sajik-dong pp. 128-129 Photographer: Sang Koo Lee B2a-20

Yonsei Medical Center - New Severance Hospital Sinchon-dong, Seodamun-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2006, Architect: Jungsik Kim+JinWoo Lim, JUNGLIM Arhictecture, Photographer: Yong Kwan Kim


Alley of Chebu-dong pp. 116-117 Photographer: Sang Koo Lee B2a-21 Hongpa-dong p. 170 Photographer: Doojin Hwang





B2b-7 Ewha Womans University Dongdaemun Hospital p.174 Jongno 6(yuk)-ga, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Doojin Hwang

BOHUN Building Jae-dong/Gye-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2005, Architect: GANSAM Partners

B2b-8 B2b-1

Zero-One-Design-Center Dongsung-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2005, Architect: Jae Heon Jeong

Downtown & Namsan, From Rear Gate of Sungkyunkwan University p.173 Photographer: Doojin Hwang

BOHUN Building pp.256-257 Architect: GANSAM PARTNERS B2b-13


B2b-9 Dongduk Women’s University Dongsung-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Architect: Wondoshi Architects Group

Near to Dongdaemun (Gate) p.92 Photographer: Changmo Ahn


Donhwamun (Apartments) & Bohyeonbong (Peak) View from Donhwamun-gil p.154 Photographer: Doojin Hwang

Geumhwa Elementary School p.209 Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi


B2b-14 Changdeokgung (Palace) from Jaedong-gil p.156 Photographer: Doojin Hwang

Dongdaemun Market pp.262-263 Photographer: Young Chea Park B2b-15

Perfomance Art Center of Dongduk p.215 Dongsung-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi

Dongdaemun Fashion Town p.349 Photographer: In Suk Yoon

Hyeondae Headquarters p.161 Gye-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Doojin Hwang


B2b-3 Philippine Market, Hyehwa-dong Rotary pp.372-373 ongno-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim

Mongol Tower Information pp. 378 Gwanghui-dong 1(il)-ga, Jung-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim


Back Street of Gwanghui-dong 1(il)-ga pp. 378 Gwanghui-dong, Jung-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim


Jaedong Elementary School p.206 Gahoe-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi

B2b-4 Dongsung-dong p.266 Dongsung-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Young Chea Park

Choongang High School p.167 Gye-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Doojin Hwang

B2b-5 Naksan Park p.174 Dongsung-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Doojin Hwang



Central Asian Street p. 379 Gwanghui-dong, Jung-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim B2b-11 B2b-2

Seoul from Naksan (Mt.) p.90 Photographer: Changmo Ahn Ihwa-dong p.205 Jongno-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi B2b-6

Welcomm City p.240 Jangchung-dong, Jung-gu, 23rd Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2000, Architect: H-Sang Seung, IROJE architects & planners+Florian Beigel, Photograph: Murai Osamu


Head Office Samyang Yeonji-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Jong Nam Park, Junglim Architecture Co., Ltd.



B2b-24 Yeongchumun, West Gate of Gyeongbokgung (Palace) p.153 Photographer: Doojin Hwang

All over Gahoe-dong pp.161-167 Jongno-gu, Photographer: Doojin Hwang Ssamziegil Gwanhun-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2005, Architects : Moongyu Choi, Yeonsei Univ.+ga.a architects+Gabriel Kroiz, Kroiz Architecture

Tongui-dong p.166 Photographer: Doojin Hwang View of Bukchon pp.222~223 Photographer: Wook Choi Bukchon (Traditional Korean Village) pp.232-237 Photographer: Wook Choi

Ssamji-gil p.287 Gwanhun-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

B2b-19 Jeongjeon of Jongmyo (Royal Shrine) p.158 Hunjeong-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Doojin Hwang Jongmyo (Royal Shrine) pp.190-191 Jongno-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

Insadong-gil pp.112-115 Jongno-gu, Photographer: Sang-Koo Lee

Hyundai Marine Fire Insurance Kwangwhamun Office, Sejongno, Jongno-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2005, Architect: Junglim Architecture Co., Ltd.

The Memorial Hall for the History and Culture of Korean Buddhism, Jogyesa (Temple) p.197 Jongno-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

Hyundai Marine Fire Insurance Kwangwhamun Office p.252 Architect: JUNGLIM ARCHITECTURE, Photographer: Yong Kwan Kim




B2b-21 Jong Ro Tower Sejongno, Jongno-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2000, Architect: Rafael Vinoly+Samoo Archiects & Engineers

Alley at Gwonnong-dong p.159 West of Jongmyo(Royal Shrine), Photographer: Doojin Hwang Alley of Gwonnong-dong pp.120-121 wonnong-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Sang Koo Lee Sulla-gil pp.120-121 Photographer: Sang-Koo Lee

Hyojaro, West of Gyeongbokgung (Palace) p.155 Photographer: Doojin Hwang B2b-28


B2b-20 Tapgol Park p.279 Hunjeong-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

Tongui-dong, West of Gyeongbokgung (Palace) p.152 Photographer: Doojin Hwang

Gwanghwamun, Bugaksan (Mt.) and Bohyeonbong (Peak) from Sejongno p.150-151 Photographer: Doojin Hwang


Pima-gil pp.110-111 Jongno 1(il)-ga, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Sang Koo Lee B2b-25 B2b-24


Gana Art Center Gwanhun-dong, Jongno-gu, 23rd Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2000, Architect; Jean Michel Wilmotte

Tapgol Park p.219 Jongno 2(i)-ga, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi


B2b-31 Seun Arcade p.206 Jangsa-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi

B2b-23 B2b-32


Dukwon Gallery Insa-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2005, Architect: Moon Sung Kwon, Atelier17

Gyeongbokgung (Palace) & Baegak (Mt.) pp.28-29 Sejongno, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Sang-Koo Lee

Taewonjeon, North-West Inside of Gyeongbokgung (Palace) p.152 Dongsung-dong, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Doojin Hwang



B2b-38 Dong-A Il Bo Head Quarters Seorin-dong, Jongno-gu, Architect: Heerim Architects & Planners

Ilmin Museum of Art p.284 Sejongno, Jongno-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

Headquarters of Woori Bank Seoul Architectural Awards 2000, Architect: SUNJIN Engineering & Architecture+Nikken Sekkei



SK T-TOWER Euljiro 2-ga Jung-gu, 28th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2005., Seoul Architectural Awards 2005., Architect: RAD(Hongkong), Junglim Architecture Co., Ltd., JINA Architects Co.,Ltd.

Monument for the 40th Anniversary of the Inauguration of King Gojong, Gwanghwamun Sageori (Crossroad) p.151 Photographer: Doojin Hwang B2b-31 City Hall Square pp.288-289 Euljiro 1(il)-ga, Jung-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park


SK T-TOWER p.354 Photographer: Yong Jae Lee B2b-40


Seoul Walls p.176 Sindang-dong, Jung-gu, Photographer: Doojin Hwang

Roof Garden of Seoul City Hall Seosomun Annex pp.294-295 Seosomun-dong, Jung-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

Walls pp.122-123 Jangchung-dong, Jung-gu, Photographer: Sang-Koo Lee

B2b-33 Hwangudan in front of The Chosun Seoul (Hotel) p.278 Sogong-dong, Jung-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park


Daehanmun (Gate) of Deoksugung (Palace) p.157 Photographer: Doojin Hwang



Descent Road from Namsan (Mt.) to Seoul Station p.177 Photographer: Doojin Hwang


Myeong-dong Catholic Cathedral pp.192-193 Photographer: Kyung Rip Park



Seoul Museum of Art Seosomun-dong, Jung-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2003, Architect: Samoo Architects & Engineers


Myeong-dong p.260 Jung-gu, Photographer: Young Chea Park B2b-43 Overseas Chinese Elementary School p.377 Myeong-dong, Jung-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim


Childcare and Children's Educational Center for Seoul Metropolitan Government Seosomun-dong, Jung-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2000, Architect: Hailim Suh, architecture studio himma, Photographer: Myunghwan Cho

Overseas Chinese High School p.376 Myeong-dong, Jung-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim B2b-44 Cheonggyecheon (Stream) pp.312-315 Photographer: In Ho Jun


Seoul Anglican Cathedral p.196 Seoul Tangible Cultural Properties no.35, Architect: Arthur Dixon, Photographer: Park Kyoung Rip



B2c B2c-1

Mapo cultural Center Daeheung-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2003, Architect: Heerim Architects & Planners B2c-2 Hangangno 1(il)-ga near Samgakji p.227 Photographer: Wook Choi B2c-3 Wonhyodaegyo (Bridge) p.53 Photographer: Kwang Suk Kim B2c-4 Yongsan Electronics Shopping Mall Yongsan-gu, pp.346-347 Photographer: In Suk Yoon B2c-5 Yongsan Station Plaza pp.348-349 Photographer: In Suk Yoon B2c-6 Railroads & Barrack, Yongsan District p.135 Photographer: Changmo Ahn

Gyeongwon Line (Railroad) p.134, p.136 Photographer: Changmo Ahn

Gyeongwon Line (Railroad), Yongsan Section pp.142-143 Photographer: Changmo Ahn B2c-7 Ichon Station p.138 Photographer: Changmo Ahn

Platform in the Ichon Station and Railroad p.138 Photographer: Changmo Ahn


Super Highrise Commercial-Residential Buildings, All over Yongsan p.330 Photographer: Jae Soon Synn




B2d-8 Hannam-dong p.36 Yongsan-gu, Photographer: Sang-Koo Lee B2d-9 Seoul Central Mosque pp.368-369 Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim

B2d-1 B2d-10 German Cultural Center p.284 Huam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park B2d-2

Samsung Museum of Art LEEUM Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, 27th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2004., Seoul Architectural Awards 2005, Architect: Samoo Architects & Engineers+Mario Botta, Jean Nouvelle, Rem Koolhaas

Namsan Public Library p.284 Huam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park B2d-3 Namsan (Mt.), View from N-Seoul Tower pp.24-25 Yongsan-dong 2(i)-ga, Yongsan-gu, Photographer: Sang-Koo Lee

Downtown Seoul from N-Seoul Tower pp.26-27 Yongsan-dong 2(i)-ga, Yongsan-gu, Photographer: Sang-Koo Lee

Samsung Museum of Art LEEUM pp.292-293 Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Architect: Samoo Architects & Engineers+Mario Botta, Jean Nouvel, Rem Koolhaas, Photographer: Seung-Hoon Yum

B2d-4 Castle Walls at Namsan (Mt.) p.91 Photographer: Changmo Ahn B2d-5


B2d-11 Noksapyeong Station Yongsan-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2001

Itaewon pp.310-311 Yongsan-gu, Photographer: In-Ho Jun


National Museum of Korea Yongsan-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2006., Architect: Jungchul Kim+ Seonghong Park, Junglim Architecture Co., Ltd., Photographer: Young Kwan Kim


National Museum of Korea p.277 Yongsan-dong 6(yuk)-ga, Yongsan-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park B2d-7 Seobinggo Station p.139 Photographer: Changmo Ahn



B3 B3-1


Seoul National University Sports Complex Sillim-dong, Gwanak-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2001., Architect: Sung-Bo Shim, POS-A.C. Co., Ltd. B3-11

Hangangcheolgyo (Railroad Bridge) p.51 Photographer: Eun-Jeong Jeon ESeoul National University Museum Sillim-dong, Gwanak-gu, 29th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2006, Architect: Rem Koolhaas+Samoo Architects & Engineers

Night View of Hangangcheolgyo (Railroad Bridge) p.317 Photographer: In-Ho Jun B3-2 88 Olympic Expressway, Between Yeouido and Hangangcheolgyo (Railroad Bridge) p.317 Photographer: In Ho Jun



B3-3 Seoul National University Research Center Sillim-dong, Gwanak-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2006, Architect: Junglim Architecture Co., Ltd.+Yoon Gyoo Jang+UNSANDONG

Nodeul-seom (Islet) p.49, p.55 Photographer: Eun-Jeong Jeon B3-4 Banpodaegyo (Bridge) & Jamsugyo p.50 Photographer: Kwang Suk Kim B3-13

B3-5 Night view of Gangbyeon Expressway, Between Hannamdaegyo (Bridge) and Banpodaegyo (Bridge) p.316 Photographer: In Ho Jun

Bongcheon-dong p.105 Photographer: Young Suk Jeon, Flying City B3-14

B3-6 Sillim-dong Gosichon p.214 Sillim-dong, Gwanak-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi

Seorae-seom (Islet) p.49 Photographer: Eun Jeong Jeon B3-7 Dongjakdaegyo (Bridge) p.53 Photographer: Eun-Jeong Jeon


National Memorial Board (National Cemetery) pp.200-201 Dongjak-dong, Dongjak-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park


Lycee Francais de Seoul at Seorae Village p.374 Banpo-dong, Seocho-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim



B1-9 Monmarte Cafe at Seorae Village p.375 Banpo-dong, Seocho-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim

Hongjecheon (Stream) p.67 Photographer: Young Chea Park B3-9 B3-17


Chung-Ang University Medical Center Heukseok-dong, Dongjak-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2005., Architect: Park Young Kern, Shim Jae Ho, Won Hyung Joon, BAUM Architects, Engineers and Consultants, Inc., Photographer: Won Yang Kim

Cheongnyong Children's Park p.375 Banpo-dong, Seocho-gu, Photographer: Jong Yup Lim



C1 C1-1

Gangbukgu Civic Center Suyu-dong, Gangbuk-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Architect: Yong Byun, Wondosi Architects Engineers & Associates C1-2 Shinil High School p.217 Mia-dong, Gangbuk-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi


C1-3 Korea University p.215 Anam-dong, Seongbuk-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi C1-4

Korea University Anam-dong, Seongbuk-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2000, Archiect: Moo Young Archiects & Engineers


C1-5 Yongmoon Middle- High School p.160 Anam-dong, Seongbuk-gu, Photographer: Doojin Hwang C1-6

KAIST Seoul Campus Lecture Hall Cheongnyangni-dong, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Architect: GANSAM Partners


C1-7 Wolgok p.38 Photographer: Sang-Koo Lee C1-8 Boundaries of Manguri Grave pp.202-203 Photographer: Kyung Rip Park






Econet Center Seongsu-dong, Seongdong-gu, 28th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2005., Seoul Architectural Awards 2006, Architect: Yoo Suk Yeon, hna architects & planners


Church of the Nazarene Jeonnong-dong, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2005, Architect: Dong-kyu Choi, Seoinn Design Group Co.

Econet Center p.243, p.252 Architect: Yoo Suk-Yeon, hna architects & planners, Photographer: Yong Kwan Kim











Gallery YEH Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, 29th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2006., Seoul Architectural Awards 2006, Archiect: Yoon Gyoo Jang, Chang Hoon Shin, UNSANDONG C2-18

INTRADOS Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2003, Architect: Rin Chul Kim C2-19

C2-8 Church of the Nazarene p.197 Architect: Dong Kyu Choi, Photographer: Su Ok Chai

Night View of Hangang (River) pp.42-43 Eungbong-dong, Seongdong-gu, Photographer: Tai Young Yang


ACROS 25th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2002, Architect: Woo Kyung Kook, YEKONG Architects & Planners, Photographer: Nam-Gung, Seon

C2-9 Seongsudaegyo (Bridge) p.51 Photographer: Kwang Suk Kim Cheonggyecheon Museum Majang-dong, Seongdong-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2006, Archiect: Junglim Architecture Co., Ltd.

C2-10 C2-20 Seoul Forest pp.68-71 Seongsu-dong 1(il)-ga, Seongdong-gu, Photographer: Young Chea Park

CAIS Gallery Cheongdam-dong, Gangnam-gu, 24th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2001, Architect: M.A.R.U.

Cheonggyecheon (Stream) pp.60-61 Photographer: Young Chea Park C2-3

Seoul Forest pp.280-281 Seongsu-dong 1(il)-ga, Seongdong-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park Seong Dong Senior Welfare Center Majang-dong, Seongdong-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2001, Architect: Sam Young Choi, Kawa Design Group

Factory p.366 Photographer: In Suk Yoon C2-12

C2-4 Wangsimni p.126-127 Photographer: Sang Koo Lee



Donghodaegyo (Bridge) p.316 Photographer: In Ho Jun

SJW Fashion Studio Seoul Architectural Awards 2005., Architect: ISON Architects, Photographer: Young Chan Jo


C2-5 Hangang (River), Namsan (Mt.) and the Heart of Seoul, Donghodaegyo (Bridge)'s South End Haengdang-dong Office 25th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2002., Seoul Architectural Awards 2003, Architect: Rin Chul Kim


SJW Fashion Building p.245 Architect: Lee Min + Son Jin, Photographer-Zoe Young-Chan

Photographer: Tai Young Yang C2-13 Jungnangcheon (Stream) pp.64-65 Photographer: Young Chea Park



C2-14 Moohak Presbyterian Church Haengdang-dong, Seongdong-gu, 28th Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2005

Residential-Commercial Apartments p.331 Jayang-dong, Gwangjin-gu, Photographer: Jae-Soon Synn C2-15 Cheongdamdaegyo (Bridge) p.53 Photographer: Kwang Suk Kim





Asem and Korea World Trade Center Expansion Samsung-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2001., Architect: AKDC+SOM+Kang Ki Se+Jeffrey J. McCarthy, Photographer: Wan Soon Park


Nonhyeon-dong Villa Nonhyeon-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2001, Architect: Heung Soo Kim, MORAM architects


Korea World Trade Center p.354 Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Yong Jae Lee

C3-2 Korea World Trade Center pp.304-305 Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: In Ho Jun The Wall Nonhyun-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Min Suk Cho+Soon Ju Suk, Dan A Architects & Interior Design, Photographer: Jae Young Park


COEX Mall pp.268-269 Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Young Chea Park C3-8

C3-3 Michellan107 Samsung-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: a-Group

Kyobo Tower Seocho-dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Chang-Jo Architects. Inc.+Mario Botta

Bongeunsa (Temple) p.195 Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

KYOBO TOWER pp.248-249 Architect: Mario Botta + Chang-jo architects



C3-5 C3-8

Dogok-dong's Skyline from Yeoksam-dong Photographer: Kyung Rip Park C3-6 Hyundai I-park Apartments p.323 Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Jae-Soon Synn


View near Gananm Station pp.270-271 Photographer: Young Chea Park C3-9

GS Tower/ Arts Center Yeoksam-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2000., Architect: Chang-Jo Architects. Inc.

GS Tower p.242 Architect: SOM+Chang-jo architects


C3-10 Seocho Garden Sweet Seocho-dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2001, Architect: Samoo Architects & Engineers C3-11


POSTEEL Tower Yeoksam-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Sung Bo Shim, Kyong Soo Park, POS-A.C. Co. Ltd. + William Pedersen, KPF C3-12

POSTEEL TOWER p.241, p.247 Architect: KPF+POS-A.C. C3-12 Meritz Tower Yeoksam-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2006 Meritz Tower p.363 Photographer: Yong Jae Lee


C3-13 Hankook Ceramics Headquarters Building Yeoksam-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Songyon Architecture Co., Ltd. C3-14




Dongbu Financial Center Seoul Architectural Awards 2003., DO-SI architect & engineering co.,ltd. +William Pederson, K.P.F., Photographer: Yum, Seung Hoon

DONGBU Financial Center p.246 Architect: KPF+DO-SI architects, urban planners & CM, Photographer: Seung Hoon Yum + Jae Sung Lee

DONGBU Financial Center p.357 Photographer: Yong Jae Lee




C3-21 Playground next to Apartments p.204 Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi

Hyundai superville Seocho-dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Jong Kook Kim, Kunwon Planners Architects & Engineers

Suttle Bus for Private Institute p.206 Daechi-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi

C3-16 Umyeon-dong Residence Umyeon-dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Architect: Kim Young-Sub + KunchookMoonhwa Architect Associates

PC Rooms p.207 Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi


Daechi Elementary School p.209 Daechi-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi

Miral School pp.198-199 Irwon-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

Commercial Mixed Building p.201 Daechi-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi


Electronic Power Cultural Center Seocho-dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2002, Architect: Sam Min Inc. Architects & Engineers

Private Institute & Apartments p.201, p.211 Daechi-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Chang Yeol Choi

C3-19 Tower Palace I Dogok-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2003, Architect: Samoo Architects & Engineers

C3-22 Jamsil Sports Complex from Hangang (River) p.55 Sonpa-gu, Photographer: Eun Jeong Jeon C3-23

Towerpalace p.321 Dogok-dong, Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Jae Soon Synn

Reconstruction of Jamsil Apartments Housing Complex p.55 Photographer: Eun Jeong Jeon C3-24

Skyline of Dogok-dong p.320 Gangnam-gu, Photographer: Jae Soon Synn

Papertainer Museum in the Olympic Park p.285 Bangi-dong, Songpa-gu, Photographer: Kyung Rip Park

C3-20 C3-25 Yangjaecheon (Stream) pp.62-63 Photographer: Young Chea Park


The 3rd Kuhyuh Apartment Complex Geoyeo-dong, Songpa-gu, 23rd Award by the Korean Institute of Architect, 2000., Seoul Architectural Awards 2001, Architect: Sung Kwan Lee, Hanul Architects & Engineers Inc., Photographer: Jung-Woong Jung



D2 D2-1

W-Hotel Gwangjang-dong, Gwangjin-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2005, Archiect: Heerim Architects & Planners D2-2

Kwangjin Information Library Seoul Architectural Awards 2001, Architect: Ho Kwan Park, TOPEC CO.,LTD ENGINEERING & CONSULTANT, Photographer: Ho Kwan Park


D2-3 Jayang Market p.265 Jayang-dong, Gwangjin-gu, Photographer: Young Chea Park D2-4 Techno Mart pp.354-355 Guui-dong, Gwangjin-gu, Photographer: Park, Young Chea



Olympics Gymnasium Bangi-dong, Songpa-gu, Seoul Architectural Awards 2004, Architect: Chul-Hee Kang, Idea, Image Institute of Architects(IIIA) D2-1


A u t h o r ’ s

B i o g r a p h y

Jae Soon Synn Editor in Chief Graduated from the Dept. of Architecture, Hongik University and received the M.S. and Ph.D of Eng. from the same graduate school. He was the principal of Yul Architects and a professor in the Dept. of Architecture, Hoigik University. As the Vice-President of ITM Cooperation Architects, he is working on various domestic and international projects including competitions.

Kyung Rip Park Editor Graduated from the Dept. of Architecture, Hanyang University and received the M.S. and Ph.D of Eng. from same graduate school. Since 1980's he have taught at the Department of Architecture, Kangwon National University and been a visiting professor at the University of Iowa, U.S. and the University of Memphis. He is in charge of the director of Architectural History Subcommittee at Korean Institute of Architects, an invited architect at Korean Institute of Architects and the director of Architectural Institute of Korea.

Changmo Ahn Editor Received B.S. in architecture at Seoul National University, and received the M.S and Ph.D from the same graduate school. He teaches at Graduate School of Architecture Kyonggi University as an assistant professor and he is working as the expert member of Seoul Cultural Properties, the director of Docomomo Korea and the member of Cultural Heritage Committee of National Trust. As his writings, there are “Korean Contemporary Architecture 50 years”(Publisher Jaewon), “Seoul Architecture History”(Seoul Metropolitan Government) and “City and Architecture of Seoul”(Seoul Metropolitan Government)

Yong Jae Lee Editor He graduated from the Dept. of architecture, Hong-Ik University and received the Ph.D from same graduate school. He practiced from hong-ik environmental development institute and Hanter architectural design office. He had held with professor in Sang-Ju National University and then is holding professor of dept. of architecture in SoonChunHyang University.


Byong Kee Kahng Gradiated from Univ. of Tokyo and received the Ph.D of Eng. from same graduate school. He worked architectural design and urban design projects under Tange Kenzo. He was the professor of the Dept. of Urban Engineering, Hanyang University, the Dean of Gumi Collage, the member of Seoul Architecture Committee and the member of Central Urban Planning Committee. He is the principle of Urban Action Network and the permanent advisor of Space Group

Kwangsoo Kim Graduated from Yonsei Univ. and School of architecture at Yale Univ. with M.Arch. After practiced at OMA, Smithmiller & Hwakinson, he established 'team BAHN, office for urban research & architectural design'. Now he teaches at Dept. of Architecture, Ewha Woman's Univ. as assistant professor.

Young Chea Park He graduated from Dept. of Photography and Image Media and is running Park Young Chea Stuio. He is giving a lecture at the Dept. of Western Painting, Dankook University and published “the Morning of Soswewon� as a photography book.

Suk Yeon Yoo Received B.S. &, M.S. degree in architecture at Seoul National University, and M.Arch. at University of Pennsylvania. She is holding professor at Myongji University, her recent design & research works are: BANG_ON_LINE(2004 Venice Biennale Korea Pavilion), School Park, Econet center, Daum Global Media Center.

In Suk Yoon Received B.S. & M.S. at Sungkyunkwan University and Ph. D at graduate school, Univ. of Tokyo. After working at Junglim Architecture and Sunglim Architecture, he is teaching at Sungkyunkwan University as a professor.

Sang Koo Lee Graduated from the Dept. of Urban Engineering at Seoul National University, and received Ph.D from the same graduate school. He is teaching at the Dept. of Architecture and doing researching on the history of the urban form on East Asia.


Jong Yup Lim He graduated from Dept. of Architecture, Hong-Ik University and same graduate school and, studied abroad in Politecnico di Milano (Milano national architecture college). He worked in 'Jang' architectural institute and 'Mario Bellini' Italian architecture design studio. He had held of fine arts professor in Sook-Myung women's university and then, he is holding associate professor in In-Ha university architecture department.

Eun Jeong Jeon Studied at Sungkyunkwan University and Landscape at Environment Graudate School, Seoul National University. After D.E.A. at Paris La Villette Architecture University and EHESS, he finished C.E.A.A. She is in the principle of the design office, LA Foret Co., Ltd., the secretary-general of Areumjigi and the director of Docomomo Korea. She participated in the projects such as Seonyudo Park, Seoul Olympic Museum of Art and Sculpture Park, Olympic-ro and Seokchon Lake and Gimhae-si Tree-Mausoleum Park(Woods of Gaya).

In Ho Jun He graduated from Jung-Ang University Dept. of Architecture and Urban design of graduate school and, studied abroad in Ecole d'Architecture Paris-Conflans. He worked in 'Jun-lim' architectural institute, 'Kunchug Munwha' and 'Equere-Blue'architectural institute in France. He had held of fine arts professor in Kyung-Gi and Hong-ik university and then, he is working 'BdB' Land Architecture department.

Wook Choi Studied at Dept. of Architecture, Hong-Ik University and National Venice Architecture Shool(dottore in arch) and got the fellowship from Valparaiso Foundation(Spain). After Jang Architects, he is in the principle of One O One Studio. He is teaching at the Dept. of Architecture, the Korean National University of Arts as a design tutor.

Kyung Koo Han Graduated from the Dept. of Anthropology at Seoul National University and the same graduate school. Received Ph.D of anthropology from Harvard Graduate School. He was the professor of School of International Studies, Kookmin University and the chief editor of Korean Society for Cultural Anthropology and Korean Social Science Research Council, the president of Overseas Korean Association, the vice-president of Korean Sociological Association and the vice-president of Education Counchil of Korean International Relation. He is also the member of Presidential Commission on Sustainable Development of the Republic of Korea.

Doojin Hwang He studied architecture at Seoul National University and Yale University. After working at SAC and TSKP, he started his own practice in 2000, and teaches at Ewha University as a visiting professor. His portfolio includes both contemporary projects, such as Open Books building, Hainaim building, KIMS corporation and KS Hospital, as well as projects inspired by Korean traditional tectonics, including Gahoeheon and a few other residences. He is a writer of two books, 'Where Is Your Seoul' and 'Hanok Is Back'. (Photographer - Tae Jeong Kim)


SEOUL, Architecture and Urbanism 2007

seoul architecture and urbanism 2007  

seoul architecture and urbanism 2007

seoul architecture and urbanism 2007  

seoul architecture and urbanism 2007